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Who pays for all of this!
Who will Pay for Universal Health Care?
With all the discussion and debate going on about universal health care, no one seems discuss one key question - Who will pay for it?
The general numbers tossed around seem to indicate that about 46 million Americans are uninsured. This number does not include those who already receive medical care from the federal government. Those already receiving federal care are children of low income families, Medicaid recipients, Medicare recipients, and VA patients. Employer supplied insurance covers about 158 million, privately purchased insurance covers about 14 million, Medicare including the disabled covers about 44 million, Medicaid covers about 38 million.
So who are these 46 million individuals with no coverage? The Kaiser Family Foundation data indicates that nearly 30 million are poor (below the poverty level), or near poor (100-199% of the poverty level). The remainder is a mix of varied income groups including young adults, unemployed, immigrants, and higher income families who choose not to purchase insurance. Illegal immigrants also comprise a sizeable portion (9 million); Hispanics, particularly those with Spanish as their first language, have a very high percentage of uninsured. About 4 million children age 1-17 who have Spanish as their first language receive free public insurance. This indicates that there are likely an equal number of adults who are also uninsured.
Bottom line, we have at least 30 million people in low income quartiles that have no insurance. According to IRS tax records, of the total federal taxes collected in recent years, this group contributes less than 2%. About 98% of all federal income tax is contributed by the top 50% of wage earners. This means that the full cost of Universal health care will fall on the middle, upper middle, and upper income tax payers. 70% of all federal taxes are contributed by the top 20% of wage earning households (Households with incomes above $100,000/yr). Given an average family size of three persons, this equates to total of 100 million households in the US. 20% of 100 Million is 20 million, so 70% of the total cost of universal care will be borne by 20% of the tax paying households. If the cost per each uninsured is the same as the present cost per Medicaid participant ($4500 per year) then the cost of the new program for the 30 million who pay no taxes would be (30,000,000 X $4500 = $135,000,000,000 per year) - that is $135 Billion. If 70% of this cost is to be borne by 20 million households, then the yearly increase in their taxes would be $4725 per year (($135,000,000,000 X .7)/20,000,000). The remainder would be divided between the middle class, which pays about 30% of the total tax bill. The per family cost for the middle class would be $1350 per year ((135,000,000,000 X .3)/30,000,000).
So the answer to the question - Who will pay for Universal Health Care?
Simply “THOSE WHO ALREADY HAVE HEALTH CARE”.
Well stated! However, some people who are definitely in the group that will pay for others' healthcare still cry "Foul!" when we try to point out the pitfall of the Health Care Bill.
--E. G. Blain