The punitive nature of American health care


Thursday is normally the deadline to submit my cartoon, but with Thanksgiving this week, the deadline has been moved forward a day or two. It is always a challenge to choose a topic that I am sure will remain relevant.

For years (decades, in fact), I have drawn cartoons about the United States being the only developed country in the world where medical debt is the leading cause of personal bankruptcy. So when I came across the story of Singapore threatening to punish those who refused the COVID-19 vaccine with medical debt, I was like, ‘Perfect – this is a topic that I know will not change. anytime soon.”

And that seemed especially relevant with so many Michigan hospitals now at full capacity with unvaccinated patients. Yes, there are shipments of federal money that will supposedly cover all costs related to COVID, but that won’t be the case. You know it, I know it. And if that covered the initial treatment costs, there will be so many, so many with additional costs due to the lingering effects. It will not be covered. This is how messy and unnecessarily expensive our health care system is.

If you want a good summary, you can check out the article Medical Debt in Wikipedia. I know, it’s Wikipedia, but you can follow the many famous quotes from the Pew Research Center, the Kaiser Family Foundation, and others if you want to go into detail.

John Auchter is a freelance political cartoonist. Its opinions are its own and do not necessarily reflect those of Michigan Radio, its management or its licensee, the University of Michigan.

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