The Clinton Health Plan

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The Clinton Health Plan The health care situation in the United States is in dire need of a change. The United States spends more money on health care per individual than any other nation in the world (14%of its GNP in 1991), and that amount is quickly rising. Virtually everyone, from doctors to politicians, recognize the unwieldy situation of health care in America, and realize that something must be done. In order to attempt to correct the failures of the current health care situation, one must understand the problems that led to the deterioration of the health care system. Perhaps the main problem with health care today is that there are 37 million Americans without insurance, and another 20 million are underinsured Another large problem with the way health care is presently organized is - as Clinton helpfully points out - waste. Some common examples are: Paperwork: There are thousands of insurance companies in the US, and each one has many forms for doctors and patients to fill out. So much so, that doctors spend more time improving their handwriting than healing people. Greed and Profiteering: Some drug companies make over 10,000% profit on the drugs they manufacture. In 1991, the median income of doctors was $139,000 for general practitioners and $512,000 for specialists. Unneeded Surgery and Tests: Possibly 15 to 35% of certain types of operations and tests are unneeded. Malpractice Suits and "Defensive" Medicine: Doctors pay high premiums on malpractice insurance which causes them to charge more. The reason that these premiums are so high is because currently there are practically no limits to an amount that can be sued for pain and damages. Defensive medicine - procedures done to protect doctors from being sued - is costing this country greatly. Recognizing that waste is one of the greatest causes of the high prices in health care, Clinton has introduced a plan to revise the health care system by eliminating waste, and making sure that every single American can be covered by a health plan. Clinton's plan is based on three premises. First, that there is enough waste in the current health care system to cover the costs of his new plan. Second, that his plan will create competition within the insurance industry. Last, that his plan can put a cap on insurance prices. The core of Clinton's plan is to set up regional health alliances,
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