Megan F. Michigan

Governmental Healthcare Assistance

We, as a country, need to improve and increase our governmental healthcare assistance in order to allow everyone to reach their fullest potential.

Dear Next President,

I am sure you know that we, as a country, have improvements that need to be made. When one hears “governmental healthcare assistance”, his initial thoughts focus on the prominent political and societal debate surrounding the cost of healthcare programs. One’s thoughts frequently neglect the amount, or lack, of healthcare assistance offered by government for its citizens in need. As a country, we need to change this susceptibility.

What are governmental programs and governmental assistance? Governmental programs and ways of assistance are similar to public transportation: those who are incapable of affording personal transportation depend on public transportation and even those who can afford personal transportation utilize public transportation. In places like New York City, an ample tourist destination, public transportation is requisite to move the masses. Without public transportation, these cities entire economic state would be compromised. However, public transportation is not easily available throughout our country. My city has little to no public transportation; we depend solely on our own means of transportation and our economic state will progress without public transportation. Additionally, those who do not have readily accessible public transportation could prosper with access: few can achieve their fullest potential if they are restricted to a small area of travel. Public transportation provides an overall benefit to the community in which it is used, an increase in governmental healthcare assistance will do the same.

How would governmental healthcare assistance aid the common good? How would a balance be created between too many and too little programs? Who will prosper from using the programs? An assistance does not directly mean a program: assistance refers to an optional, public opportunity (such as public transportation) while programs refer to an essential societal service (such as a driver's license for those who wish to drive). While health insurance is highly suggested for all, one does not necessarily have to partake in this but, alternatively, face consequences of such decisions: thus health insurance cannot fully fall into either a program or assistance. The healthcare assistance we need to increase in our country is none of health insurance, rather an optional service or a form of a good that anyone can use if needed. Optional assistance does not affect those who wish not to partake but, concurrently, benefits those who do partake: in biology this is a commensalism symbiotic relationship in which one organism benefits while the other is neither harmed nor benefited. Furthermore, there is no maximum amount of relationships; any correspondence can be achieved but many are unnecessary; yet there is a minimum amount of relationships; if this minimum is not met an organism may not prosper, reproduce, or adapt sufficiently. Without governmental healthcare assistance, one can fall behind his potential, harming not only one person but limiting the possible effects one could have had on our society. Ways of assistance can be highly accepted resulting from their commensalistic results while programs tend to be highly controversial due to their mandatory state.

Currently, we do have well known governmental programs in place to assist many in general health needs: medicare, medicaid, Obamacare. However, these programs are subject to scrutiny from politicians and citizens alike. These programs are synonymous with predation relationships in biology: one organism feeds or kills on another organism for self gain (increase of survival rates, food source, available land). As seen in these programs, the person partaking in the program will prosper while those who wish not to, or those who do not qualify, face consequences such as taxation. These programs seem hopeless, in which one person will benefit at the cost of others harmed, negatively affecting the common good. Additionally, we have programs that are capable of being helpful yet they are generally unknown: Children’s Health Insurance Program, Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs, Supplemental Security Income. Many of these programs are particular and only those in highly specific circumstances are able to use it (Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs define in their terms what qualifies as special needs) and target certain groupings of people (mainly those with defined low incomes). Although governmental healthcare programs do exist, they do so with limited benefits unlike governmental assistance.

We need to bring to attention our lack of governmental healthcare assistance in our country, especially when we are seen as a trailblazer and leader within a world where other countries have significantly better assistance services: many of which have minimum or no cost, low rejection rates, and are generally inclusive. As a world leader constantly striving for freedom, liberation, and equality, shouldn’t it be our personal responsibility to assist all of our peers, no matter their needs, race, gender, or age?

My older brother was diagnosed with autism at three years old. The cause of his developmental disorder is unimportant as the substantial problem for my family became the perpetual pursuit of assistance: therapists, pediatricians, paraprofessionals. With unknown programs for those with autism, my brother was subject to those with general knowledge who told my parents that my brother would never graduate school let alone live independently. My brother quickly proved them wrong after my family found a public school district with a better program for those with special needs. With the public school special needs program, those who qualify for this assistance are greatly aided in educational areas. Qualifications are defined through a collaboration of the student, teachers, paraprofessionals, and parents or guardians. However, as I have gone through years of public education, I have seen a decrease in these programs in both availability and funding. With a younger brother diagnosed with ADHD and other cognitive disorders, my family currently has an unparalleled difficulty in finding the same special needs programs within our public school district. These difficulties threatened to compromise my younger brothers ability to learn at his fullest potential and he quickly fell behind. Now in middle school, the program is comparably better than in elementary school but not up-to-par with the one my older brother was apart of. This is not just a circumstance for my family, my school district, or my community but rather an issue throughout our country. Funding increases in higher education courses take funds away from supplemental and assistance courses. Consequently, some students are being benefited while others are being harmed and left behind, yet another predation relationship.

An increase in governmental healthcare assistance would benefit those who have been long ignored yet have the capability of affecting not only our country but the world as a whole. One's disability or disorder should not limit their potential, especially when we are a society where disorders and disabilities run high (cognitive disabilities such as ADHD and autism, mental health issues such as depression and anxiety to name a few). Should we not put in all of our effort to assist all of our fellow men, women, and children? Governmental healthcare assistance does not need to be a grandiose program, rather a simplistic opportunity. For cognitive disabilities, constantly funded public educational services should be provided. For mental health, ways to be diagnosed should be more accessible and less looked down upon. For cancers, any support group could easily be made. These ways of assistance should not hinder others but rather bring all to their full potential, thus increasing our societal equality, inclusiveness, and potential. Is this not the way of the American people?

Thank you and good luck in your presidency,

Megan Farrelly