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Boo! The Scariest Thing About Halloween Is the American Healthcare System!

Spooky season is here! That means full moons, vampires, witches, that guy with the chainsaw, COVID-19 … there are so many spooky things lurking around to be afraid of! What could be scarier than any of that? 

… Maybe I shouldn’t have asked, but realistically the scariest thing you’ll have to face this year is actually the United States’ frightening healthcare system. Fortunately there’s a vaccine to protect you against COVID-19 and garlic seems to keep vampires away, but who’s going to protect you from medical debt, predatory pharmaceutical prices, and health insurance that still overcharges you with crazy copays? Not your government! Buahahaha!

If you really want to shake in your boots this Halloween, here are some positively spooky facts about your access to healthcare that should definitely keep you up at night:

Did you know that healthcare is the largest source of debt in the United States? 

Americans owe nearly twice as much medical debt as was previously thought, about $140 billion, to be exact, and the amount owed has become increasingly concentrated in states that do not participate in the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion program. And our government isn’t really making any major progress to change this? Ahhhh!!!!

Surprise! Insulin costs way more in the United States than it does anywhere else!

Average Price of Insulin in 2018

Of course, this isn’t really a surprise. It is common knowledge that insulin costs way more in the United States due to greedy pharmaceutical manufacturers, but did you know how bad it is? If only there was someone or government entity that could make an effort to control this ...

Chilling! Your insurance is directly tied to your employment!

Do you have a terrible job you just wish you could quit? Well, only at the expense of your health and wellbeing, of course. It’ll send a shiver down your spine knowing that most Western nations offer universal health coverage, while the United States sees fit to tie it directly to your job. Just don't get fired!

Other developed countries have some form of universal healthcare – the United States does not!

Places like France, Germany, Switzerland, and Canada and the majority of developed nations all have some form of healthcare for their residents, even boasting a slightly higher life-expectancy. While American politicians have proposed “Medicare for All” and even proposed a “public option” plan, which would make a massive improvement to our current system, our government has chosen to remain the same, leaving millions and millions of Americans uninsured

The United States quite literally has the worst healthcare system compared to other developed countries…

This isn't just my opinion, either – in studies, the United States actually ranks “well below” the average of the other countries' healthcare overall, and “far below” the top four countries. Specifically, the United States dramatically falls short on access to care, administrative efficiency, equity, and health-care outcomes. Not only is the issue bad – everyone knows about it and yet nothing has changed!

The scariest part of all of this is feeling helpless in a system that seems designed to fail. Take your power back by using this helpful tool to find your representatives so you can contact them and tell them exactly how you feel about this issue. Follow CNC for more ways you can take action in your neighborhood.

Is there an issue in your neighborhood that you think should be addressed? Email any story suggestions, tips, or comments to [email protected].

CNC Side Eye is strictly satirical. Satire is the use of humor, irony, exaggeration, or ridicule to expose and criticize people's stupidity or vices, particularly in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues. Any coincidental use of names is not intentional.