Living in America definitely has its perks, it is after all, "the land of opportunity". According to the American Declaration of Independence, "...all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness." LIFE. It is the Right of every American to live. Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness have become the main focus in the United States. Somewhere along the line, the people in charge forgot about the first, and most important, of the three Rights that the forefathers of America put into the Declaration of Independence. The injustice of the American healthcare system is no laughing matter. Here are 40 ways that show how unjust the system truly has become.
1. 'I Give It A Year At Best'
In America, there is so much uncertainty about universal health care. There are so many questions that people have about where the money comes from in order to pay for everyone's healthcare. There are some who believe that universal health care is destined to fail, that eventually, governments will not be able to continue the 'experiment' that is health care for all.
More than thirty countries have tested the waters of universal healthcare, and not one of them has drowned. Sounds like a pretty good experiment to me.
2. 'Not My Problem'
The Hippocratic oath states that a medical doctor shall "first, do no harm". The act of 'doing no wrong' seems to be interpreted differently by many doctors across the States.
There are some doctors who will go above and beyond for patients regardless of their insurance policies, however, due to payment concerns, when given the opportunity to help an injured or sick person, an ongoing trend amongst doctors nationwide is to choose to do nothing at all.
3. 'Don't Forget My Lucky Helmet'
When traveling to America it is important for a tourist to remember to pack clothing that will be able to accommodate any type of weather, and enough bubble wrap to last the duration of their trip.
Purchasing the best health insurance plan when traveling is always a good idea because of the endless amount of things that could accidentally happen. When traveling to the States, one must consider the outrageous medical fees that one may incur for a visit of any kind to the doctor.
4. 'Tickled Pink'
Being paid-for-service is one of the benefits of becoming a doctor in the United States. Due to the title that one achieves upon graduating medical school, they are able to charge patients unbelievable prices for the most minimal of services.
It's better to laugh than to cry, and more often than not all one can do is laugh at the absurd reality of the American healthcare system.
When politicians on any level start to gamble with people's health, they have clearly lost sight of what is important. Without the people, there is no one to lead.
If it were possible for an elected official to somehow ensure that all of their voters were able to receive proper medical treatment when needed, one would have to hope that they would choose that option every time.
The cost of routine surgery is so outrageous in America that many people have decided to stop going in for procedures unless absolutely necessary.
The main problem with this is that there are people who have begun studying surgical procedures on youtube in hopes of learning how to perform basic operations at home.
7. 'Those Hips Didn't Lie'
One of the results of belonging to a private healthcare system is paying an arm and a leg for some of the most essential procedures. And there is nothing more important than making sure that someone is able to 'hula' well into their twilight years.
One would have to think that any country would want its people to have their hips fully functioning. Two working hips usually equates to more time that one spends as part of the workforce, thus, in turn, contributing more to the economy.
8. 'Got Any Ginkgo Biloba?'
The high cost of health insurance has caused people to explore a variety of cheaper, alternative medicines.
At the local grocery store, one could find almost anything they may need in order to complete a natural remedy scavenger hunt. A lot of stores even have entire aisles dedicated to natural alternatives.
9. 'That Bill Is Toxic'
At times, going out for a nice long desert hike with a buddy can be just what the doctor ordered. Just be sure that everyone keeps their eyes open for snakes because the doctor's visit that proceeds a snake bite will have more terrifying consequences than the snake bite itself.
After being bitten by a rattlesnake, this person was told that they were lucky to be alive...At least they're given 2 weeks to pay the bill though. Next time, they'd be better off paying someone a few thousand dollars to suck the venom out of them instead.
10. 'Quit Toying With Us'
There are so many people in the United States who scrape by every day just to be able to afford the most basic of health care needs.
And then there are toys that are given better quality care than actual people. There is no acceptable reason why this should have happened, but hey, it's great to see the paramedics taking an interest in the community, and the Elf look hilarious in a hospital robe.
11. 'Just Breathe'
If someone suffers from panic attacks, the last thing that they need to be doing is seeking medical attention for anything at all. The bill alone will be enough to send them into a fit.
This medical bill is from someone who had forgotten their anti-anxiety medication at home. Upon having a minor panic attack at work, their boss called for medical help. For one Xanax and a short consultation, the bill was almost 2 months rent. It probably would have been better for this person to just skip the day at work once realizing their meds were missing.
12. 'What's It Worth To Ya?'
As the number of people who suffer from an illness increases, as does the cost of the medication that is needed in order to treat the said ailment.
It may seem like a joke, but due to the increasing prices of much-needed pharmaceuticals such as insulin, Americans across the country are faced with extremely tough decisions in regards to their health.
13. 'Supply And Demand'
Over the past few years, the use of opioids has become an ever-increasing problem across America. Year after year, the number of people who succumb to their addiction and overdose on opioids has been increasing. Luckily there is medication available to help someone who has overdosed.
Something is not right when the company that created the drug that could save someone's life, is also the entity responsible for the unreasonable prices that result in them being unable to afford the cost of being kept alive.
14. 'Hmm, Tough Choice'
The elected officials who are responsible for leading each country should be held accountable for ensuring that every one of their citizens has access to what they need to live a healthy life.
Some politicians are genuinely concerned about the public and they have made it evident in their actions, while others focus more on their election campaigns and making the rich richer.
15. 'Two Gift Cards And A Pack Of Masks, Please"
As we have all seen over the past year or so, the need to vaccinate against deadly viruses is rather important for the economic and social well-being of the common folk. Most countries understand the importance of making the flu vaccine available to all of their citizens, free of charge. Not all. Most.
In America, for only $27.99 someone can buy a gift card for a vaccine that those who live in universal healthcare providing countries get for free.
16. 'It's Ok, I Won't Bite'
If someone is accident-prone, it just might be time to get a dog and become good friends with their vet.
Veterinarians are also doctors, and as long the one looking after Rosco is sketchy enough, they should be willing to do basic procedures on humans for a fraction of the cost.
17. 'Mid-Life Crisis At 39'
It is very difficult for people without proper medicare to afford the medications that they may need. There are countless examples of families who have lost loved ones too soon because of the outrageous costs of treatments that are essential for their survival.
The price that Americans pay for their health is taking years off their lives. People in the States live an average of three years less than their neighbors to the north in Canada, and four and a half years less than people in Japan.
18. 'Healthcare, Eh?'
Many Americans are unaware of the actual costs of medications. They believe that the prices that they are being forced to pay for life-saving drugs and treatments are the same prices that people from other countries do.
Adding the outrageous costs of medical care to their taxes is one of the fears that Americans harbor about universal healthcare. What they don't realize is that the actual costs are a fraction of what they think they are being told they are.
19. 'I'll Take A Fifth Of Scotch Instead'
Be sure to have a good look over the bill when leaving the hospital after even the most routine of procedures. Being charged almost $15,000 for basic room and board, as well as one's stay in the emergency and recovery rooms, is simply outlandish. But those aren't even the worst of the charges that one may incur when needing an emergency appendectomy.
At $4,500 for anesthetic, a patient may be better off, in the long run, staying awake through the process of having their appendix removed. It's just a few small incisions, it can't be that bad.
20. 'Anyone Got A Spare 10G?'
Giving patients a discount for paying the bill early is a great idea, however, the discount is usually not worth the sacrifices that need to be made in order to come up with such large sums in such a short time.
This discount is only good if the other $7,600 is paid for in only five weeks. That's more than 20% of the average annual salary in America, that would be needed in order to settle this bill, and this is a relatively small medical bill in the U.S.
21. 'No One In Here Is Guilty'
The cost of a decent quality of life in America is rather high. By the time student loans and ill-thought-out purchases are paid off, it's time to focus on sorting out the mortgage. Unless someone is in the upper class of people in America, chances are they will live most of their working lives paying off a debt of one kind or another.
Medical debt in America is almost like a prison sentence. Adding on five years of debt every time that medical attention is needed for any reason, is more like a life sentence than healthcare, and if you know the right people you can get out early.
22. 'Chapter 7'
The number of people who go bankrupt, because of medical bills, in countries that have universal healthcare can not be counted on one hand. Because no one goes bankrupt from medical bills in countries that have universal healthcare.
However, 66.5% of all bankruptcy cases in the United States are due to the costs of medical bills.
23. 'Health Cards Sold Here'
It's rather odd for people who are not from America to see healthcare being sold in grocery stores, but that's what's happening as a result of the public's need to purchase their own medical plans.
A gift card is a great fallback present when having trouble finding the right thing to get someone, or when doing some last-minute shopping. Shops across the nation have found the answer for anyone who has an accident-prone friend or knows someone who plays hockey. Just be sure to read the fine print.
24. 'Chump Change'
All because someone is able to afford health insurance in America, does not mean that they are able to afford good health insurance.
Some insurance providers charge a hefty premium for not much return. Occasionally the cost of insurance is not worth the amount that one pays for it. 2.5% off of a healthcare bill may not seem like much, but it sure does add up for accident-prone folks.
25. 'All Fees Apply'
The people of America deserve to have the same access to affordable medical care as those who live in other countries of similar socioeconomic status. In Canada, if chemo treatments are administered in a hospital setting, then as is the case with universal healthcare, there is no cost to the patient.
The average monthly cost of what a cancer patient in the United States needs to pay for their treatment is about $10,000. That is about three times what the average monthly salary is in America. Many patients run out of money partway through treatment and are left to fend for themselves with the added bonus of now being bankrupt.
26. 'Never Lose Hope'
When finding out that emergency medical care is needed, there are many thoughts that begin to go through one's mind. Aside from the hard road to recovery that lays ahead, there are numerous other things that one must account for.
After seeing the medical bills that one will have to pay, it is hard to find a reason why it's worth putting their families through such emotional and financial hardships.
27. 'Oodles & Oodles Of Monies'
There are those in America that believe there is one quick and easy answer to everyone's healthcare problems.
In order for people to afford healthcare, they just have to earn more money. The common belief that money solves all of one's problems may not be true, but it does solve all of one's health insurance problems.
28. 'All Talk And No Action'
The United States government has, for years, been speaking about a radical change to the public healthcare system. Some senators and congresspeople have run their campaigns on the promise of affordable medical plans for all.
Broken promises and pipe dreams are all that voters are left with once delegates win their seats in office. One of the main problems with the American system is that as one elected official replaces the next (if they are from opposing parties), they usually overturn the things that their predecessor has deemed important.
29. 'I Am The Danger'
'Breaking Bad' was a series about a high school teacher who found out that he had cancer, and in order to afford treatment, decided that cooking crystal meth was his best option. If Walter White lived in almost any other country in the world, the show probably wouldn't have lasted as long as it did.
It would have been a fantastic 3-part miniseries, a real emotional rollercoaster. Being a tax-paying citizen, Walter White would have found out that his treatments were not going to cost him anything. He would then recover at home with his loving family and finally, have a tremendous homecoming when he returns to work at the high school. Not as exciting, but would still probably have won a few awards.
30. 'Guns Over Life'
Gun violence has been an ongoing issue in America for years. Over the past decade, there has been a drastic rise in the number of mass shootings and as a result, mass shooting victims.
Yet, people seem to care more about the rights of the gunman to own a gun, than they do of the victim to get proper healthcare. After receiving emergency medical treatment, victims are given a hefty bill on their way out.
31. 'Just Sleep It Off'
A large number of American teenagers are not fortunate enough to have parents who can afford full medical insurance for everyone in the family. Although children are able to be added to their parent's medical plan until they are 18 years old, not every parent can afford to do so, thus leaving children in the tough position of not wanting to burden their families with ailments or injuries.
The healthcare situation in America is so bad that when Peter Parker got bit by a radioactive and poisonous spider, he opted to go home and endure whatever was awaiting him, instead of seeking emergency medical care.
32. 'Medication Time'
Due to insurance covering the cost of treatment, psychiatric institutions in America have been known to keep patients longer than they need to be there.
...but as soon as the insurance runs out, even if the patient is still in dire need of mental help, they are out on the street in no time.
33. 'Uber Medics'
We have been taught from a young age that in case of emergency we should call 9-1-1. But when the cost of the ride to the hospital adds up to more than what someone earns in a month, it's time to find an alternative method of getting to the E.R.
And that is exactly what people in America have decided to do. Uber has become an excellent alternative to an ambulance. Their pick-up times are quicker, they charge about 10 bucks a ride, and some drivers even supply a cold bottle of water and a great conversation.
34. 'The Miracle Of Life'
Hospitals in the United States have been known to charge their patients for some fairly ridiculous things over the years. When this woman went to the hospital to give birth, she probably didn't expect to see some of the things on this bill.
It may be the cheapest charge on the bill, however, being charged almost $40 to hold one's child is just ridiculous, and don't forget the $62 to teach the new mother how to breastfeed.
35. 'Unsatisfied Citizen On Line #3'
In the United States, there is a directory with the contact information for all of the local congresspeople. It's intended to give every voter the opportunity to voice their opinion.
It is common for people to call their local congressperson in order to give their two cents about the need for universal healthcare. The #MEDICARE4ALL movement is standing behind the idea that if enough people speak up, there can and will be change. After all, is that not what America is all about?
36. 'This Better Be The Best JELLO Ever!'
Staying in a hospital as an in-patient costs more than two and a half times what it does to stay in luxury five-star accommodation.
Someone's wallet would end up being about $1000 lighter after staying for 1 night in a 5-star hotel in the United States, while the average cost of a one-night stay in an American hospital is just over $2,600.
37. 'Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice. Oh, Wait...'
A lot of people have heard the urban legend about pop rocks and coca-cola but not nearly as many have attempted the experiment. When put into practice, some urban legends are more frightening than others. Like the one about healthcare in the United States.
If someone were to say "everyone deserves healthcare" three times while looking in a mirror, Sarah Huckabee Sanders will show up behind them and give them this look.
38. 'Don't Look Up When It Rains'
Pets are an important part of our lives. They are there through the good times and bad times and are usually able of putting smiles on our faces.
As much as we love our little furry friends, it is devastating to know that there are many countries in the world where pets have better healthcare services than the majority of the American people.
39. 'Every Little Bit Helps'
In a world where we have become increasingly more skeptical of other people's intentions, it is the kindness of strangers that has helped to save many lives in America.
It is not uncommon for those in need to turn to crowd-sourcing for help. GoFundMe pages have been responsible for paying the medical bills for people going through chemotherapy treatments, victims of domestic abuse, mass shootings, and many others.
40. 'See Ya In 3 to 5'
If someone is concerned about the financial burden that they will be on their families due to their medical needs, they could always try robbing a bank. Not for the money, but for the free treatment that will follow their trial.
By law, prisons are required to provide proper medical treatment for whoever is incarcerated within its walls.