Healthcare: Is It a Right or a Responsibility?
Everyone knows that healthcare in America should change, so why does it not change? What or who will be the spark that ignites the next step in the Health Revolution? How long will it realistically take for healthcare to become what it needs to be? These are just a few of the questions to be addressed in the struggle for change, exemplified well by the divided reaction to the COVID-19 public disease control efforts. It is time, for as many authorities as are willing, to openly explore with the people their answers to those and other fundamental questions, including the one to be explored here today: is healthcare a right or a responsibility?
Setting the tone for this discussion, it is both. Let us get real for a moment. Health is a personal responsibility. Every body is different. Each has its own unique game of chess going on between the various factors that keep someone optimized rather than marginalized, thriving instead of surviving. Keeping your internal communication network free of interference (see Chiropractic, Upper Cervical), commitment to sleep hours and proper posture, nutritional choices (it is okay to ask for help), emotional and stress management guidance (it is also okay to ask for help), and the like. That is health, and each person must take ownership and play their part. Health care is a right. Be very thankful if you are among the fortunate, and give back to the community so that the less fortunate have a health anchor, if you will, keeping them engaged in the effort to create greater stability in their lives by trying to reduce the chance that their health will not allow them to. It would make America greater in many ways if more people could legitimately find stability.
The right or responsibility question is among the most important topics at the forefront of the dividing line separating the United States from embracing at least the possibility of universal coverage for the entire population. Opponents of universal healthcare are plentiful in America, many even outright dismissive of it. This article will not attempt to stake a claim either way on the subject, but statistically the overwhelming majority of the best healthcare systems in the world do have a form of universal coverage. In one publication, all but two of the twenty-nine countries ahead of the United States, including each of the top nineteen ranked in overall healthcare, have universal systems. So, regardless of one’s opinion on right or responsibility, the statistics warrant strong consideration of a systemic shift.
If America goes down that road, though, committing to taking a step back, compromising on some things, but not all things, studying how its peers in the world have been much better than it, and genuinely changing something that has long since needed an overhaul, then it will have achieved a momentous step forward in the evolution of health care. It is extraordinarily important to remember, though, that how America views health itself is in just as dire a need of a seismic transformation. Where talking about this topic often gets mixed up is when health and healthcare are assumed to be about the same thing. Healthcare is built around maintaining an adequate level of well-being, necessary to be a functional member of society. Yet again, survive is not thrive. Health is being the best version of yourself in all phases of life, as best you can. The personification of health does not understand the modest goals of the personification of health care. They are coffee and tea, and perhaps it is time to be bold and dump the current ways of thinking about health and healthcare into the harbor.
Obviously, there is so much more to this big picture conversation. Making the distinction between health and healthcare is just the first step; these distinctions are going to lay the foundation for America’s future. Health is more important than anything. Healthcare is important too. Leaders need to be clearer on these distinctions so that the people at large are clearer on them too. Collectively getting on the same page is the short-term goal. There is a lot of work to be done, so a general synergy among the people is necessary to push us confidently in the right direction of change.