It is nothing but a tragedy that even in the 21st century, basic healthcare amenities are not free for everyone. Yes, some countries do indeed have excellent healthcare systems in place. However, the same cannot be said for the rest, which unfortunately forms the majority! In this discussion, we talk about the policies and the systems that help everyone own access to healthcare for free. And it is not just the government that has to play the key role! There is a role for non-government organizations as well. We will talk about their role in detail in this discussion, plus mention a few countries where the concept of universal healthcare has been successfully implemented.
So, without further ado, let us begin!
Role of governments in healthcare
It is always the USA about which people talk more passionately whenever healthcare is the subject under discussion. But we are sure that you know that it is the responsibility of governments all over the world to provide their citizens with at least the basic healthcare facilities. Governments are responsible for regulating not just the public health insurance policies, but also the private ones as well. The regulating role doesn’t end there, a government must do all it can to make sure that pharmaceutical prices are not hitting the roof either. Tax exclusive policies are the crux of such regulations.
Services provided under FHC
You might have heard this term FHC mentioned too often in debates about healthcare policies. What do you think it means? Well, it stands for Free Healthcare Policies. The main idea behind FHC implementation is to minimize the financial burden that people have to bear when trying to avail of healthcare services. Normally, services that are taken care of under the FHC include C-sections, pediatric healthcare services, antenatal care, and a few others. FHC policies allow a person to avail of free health services at the point of use. Introduction and implementation of FHC policies are one of the key steps towards UHC.
What is universal healthcare?
In case you are wondering about the UHC that we just mentioned in the previous section, it refers to universal health care. This is a system that is designed to provide world-class medical services to all of its citizens. The best thing about this system? It doesn’t matter if you can’t pay, the government has your back. Although UHC is usually funded by income tax money, it still makes life easier for a lot of people since it significantly lowers the overall healthcare cost. There are other advantages with the UHC as well. It is a system in which hospitals have to provide the same standard of healthcare services, regardless of their rankings. And that is where this system beats pretty much every other model in this race. It ensures premium healthcare services!
Countries with universal healthcare
Now, we are sure that you are all intrigued about this model that offers healthcare for free. Congratulations if you are already a citizen of one of those countries that have a developed UHC in place. Read on if you are not! Well, top of the list is France, which has an excellent social health insurance system in place. This system provides healthcare facilities to every legal resident of the country. Covered by this healthcare insurance are doctors, drugs, dental, and eye care. A similar healthcare program exists in Germany as well. In Switzerland, a different healthcare system exists, one that provides basic healthcare facilities to all of the residents. Canada and the UK also have excellent UHC plans in place.
Are there any disadvantages?
Enough with the pros, let us talk a bit about the cons now. Are there any disadvantages associated with the UHC and FHC? Since these programs are funded by the tax payer’s money, the healthy ones have to pay for the poor ones as well. Plus, it puts a strain on the annual budget as well. And since there is a service that is offered for free, people are likely to manipulate it as well.
Role of NGOs in healthcare
We have talked about the government’s role in managing healthcare in detail. But in third world countries, the burden has to be shared by the non-government organizations as well. Rural areas in particular which do not have basic healthcare facilities and institutes need the attention of NGOs and INGOs. We are not going to talk about all of these NGOs in this discussion, it is not even possible! But we would like to mention one particular organization that has been playing its part magnificently in Pakistan. And that organization is Transparent Hands.
Transparent Hands is one of the outstanding NGOs that are operational in the country. It is the largest technological platform for crowdfunding in the healthcare sector of Pakistan. It offers a complete range of free healthcare services including medical and surgical treatments, medical camps, and telehealth facilities to the underprivileged community of Pakistan. The platform provides visibility to underprivileged patients and builds a personal and trusted bond between patients and donors while ensuring complete transparency. It also sets up free medical camps in the rural areas of Pakistan in which, free medical consultation, free medicines, and free diagnostic tests are provided to deserving patients. Donors from all over the world can use the Transparent Hands crowdfunding web portal and donate through 100% secure payment modes. They could select any patient, fund the treatment, and receive regular feedback and updates until the patient has recovered completely.
Well, folks, that would be all for now. We wish we could go on a bit more, but the limitations of time and space force us to wrap up this discussion here. There are so many interesting aspects that we couldn’t fit in this debate, you should read about these whenever you have the time! But with an optimistic feeling that you learned something new if not everything, we bid you farewell from this discussion!