I did a google search for “which countries in the world have universal healthcare” and came upon a Wikipedia result. The entry states that the USA is the only wealthy, industrialized nation who does not have healthcare. As a matter of fact, we have over 47 million out of 300 million citizens with no healthcare coverage according to the National Coalition on Healthcare. It appears however that the USA is funding healthcare coverage for Iraqis and Afghanistan. According to the site:
” The number of uninsured children in 2005 was 8.3 million – or 11.2 percent of all children in the U.S. (1). The number of children who are uninsured increased by nearly 400,000 in 2005, breaking a trend of steady declines over the last five years. “
However, the good news is that Americans are helping every Iraqis get healthcare. Now, I do believe that this is a noble act and with all the sanctions placed on Iraq since the early 90s, there has been a lot of needless suffering by Iraqi children. However, should we not fix our own healthcare system before helping foreign countries get Universal Coverage?
In fact, USAID.gov states that over 97% of IRAQI children have been immunized against MMR and Polio. Again, let me stress that only 91% of Amercian kids have healthcare so it can be assumed that our vaccination rates are not as high as Iraq since the USA government won’t generally pay to have our children immunized. The report also states the the USA help renovate over 110 healthcare centers while our inner city hospitals are being closed for lack of funding.
We need to get our priorities in order. The more we invest in our own country’s health the more our country will be able to help the rest of the world. However , should not our aid and assistance of our fellow humans around the globe result from abundance of our riches and not in place of our basic healthcare needs?