assurance santé is one of the biggest expenses a person will have in their lifetime. It is also one of the most important investments a person can make in their overall well-being and financial stability. However, the decision to have or not have health insurance is a personal one that should be carefully considered in light of an individual’s unique situation and needs.
The benefits of having health insurance go beyond covering medical bills to include prevention and wellness services, drug coverage and chronic disease management. It can help prevent or detect illness early and provide access to care that is often cheaper than the resulting costs without it. It can also allow individuals to have a choice of healthcare providers which may lead to better quality care and more effective doctor-patient relationships. In addition, some types of health insurance can offer tax advantages such as deducting premiums and medical expenses.
Having health insurance can protect against the possibility of catastrophic, expensive medical bills that are a leading cause of bankruptcy in the United States. Even if an individual does not have a preexisting condition, he or she can still be at risk of costly hospital stays due to unplanned events such as childbirth or a serious accident. Without adequate health coverage, these high costs can threaten an individual’s ability to save for other long-term goals such as retirement or college tuition.
Health reform introduced the concept of universal health coverage and created pathways for all Americans to have affordable, comprehensive health coverage. Until recently, many people had to choose between getting the health coverage they needed and paying for other necessities. While the penalty for not having health insurance has been eliminated, it is still important to understand the pros and cons of having or not having health coverage.
Medicaid has been a crucial component of the U.S. health care system for five decades, extending access to quality care to millions of low-income people. With health reform’s expansion of eligibility to non-elderly adults, Medicaid is serving more of the country’s most vulnerable citizens than ever before.
In this series, we will look at the ways that state policies, innovations and partnerships are using Medicaid to improve outcomes for children, families, seniors and people with disabilities, and how Medicaid is poised to play an even larger role in our nation’s health care future. For more information about our ongoing coverage of this issue, see our series’ homepage and subscribe to our monthly newsletters here. Copyright 2019 The New York Times. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.