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Top 10 Misconceptions About Affordable Health Insurance

#1: Very Few Americans Are Without Insurance
This is absolutely not true. Every four years, the U.S. Census Bureau determines that more and more Americans do not have health insurance. Most recently, that number was as high as 41 million, meaning that one out of every seven Americans are uninsured. Most of these are women, children, and minorities.

#2 : The Number of Americans Without Insurance Has Not Increased In 10 Years
Actually, the number of uninsured people in the United States has increased by nearly ten million since the 1990's. Even worse, that number continues to rise by the millions nearly every year.

#3: Most People Who Are Uninsured Are Also Unemployed
Again, not true. Nearly 80% of uninsured Americans have jobs or are in working families. They lack health insurance for one of two reasons: their employers don't offer it, or their employers do offer it but the employees can't afford to pay their portion of the premium.

#4: People Without Health Insurance Will Still Get Timely Care
This a very common belief, but also very untrue. People who don't have health insurance will often delay going to be cared for until they are seriously ill. Statistics show that they end up dying younger than those with health insurance. Secondly, hospitals have certain criteria for a patient without insurance before they are attended to; Their health condition has to be on the verge of being deadly, unless they are a child.

#5: Other Countries Don't Have Affordable Health Insurance Options Either
Filmmaker Michael Moore proved this one wrong in his 2007 documentary Sicko. In the film, he investigated the health care systems in Canada, Britain, and France - and found that most people living in those countries either had affordable or universal health plans. This means that it was either very cheap or free.

#6: Uninsured People Don't Affect Insured People
When millions of people don't have affordable health insurance, everyone is affected - even those who are insured. It is often the insured that end up paying for the uninsured to be cared for. Whether they realize this or not, it's often incorporated into their own hospital bills - which is why they are generally so high. In addition, insured patients can find themselves waiting hours to be cared for because of sickly uninsured patients who are occupying the emergency rooms and hospital beds.

#7: Not Having Health Insurance Is Not Financially Risky
Being without health insurance can easily lead to serious debt, bankruptcy, and sometimes homelessness. This is because most individuals and families can not afford to pay 100% of their medical bills - especially if a surgery or major operation is needed.

#8: Most People Without Health Insurance Are Irresponsible Young People
Not true. 75% of adults that are uninsured happen to be age 25 and older. Even worse, Americans adults that are age 25-65 are one of the fastest growing groups in the country that don't have affordable health insurance.

#9: When You Lack Health Insurance, There Are No Health Consequences
If this were true, then why is it that uninsured men and women with cancer are 50% more likely to die than their insured counterparts with the same exact health conditions? A similar statistic can be applied when comparing uninsured patients with insured patients that have almost any disease.

#10: Affordable Health Insurance For All Americans Is Impossible To Achieve
If the United States can fund an $100 billion war against Iraq and Afghanistan, then we can also fund an affordable health insurance system for all American families. Even worse, the U.S. spends billions of dollars on astronomy research, agricultural research, and weather research - all of which aren't nearly as high of a priority as Americans being properly covered.


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