|Issue of the Day Posts Tagged ‘Insurance’|
Many Adults Lack Vaccinations That Could Save Their Lives
Published Monday, July 27th, 2009 by Lacey Loftin
A survey of adult vaccinations completed by the Centers for Disease Control and the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases reported that diseases which are easily preventable by adult vaccines kill more Americans, over 50,000 adults, each year than car wrecks, breast cancer, or AIDS. The surveys show that generally Americans are unaware or misinformed about the dangers and vaccines available for diseases like the flu, Hepatitis B, Pneumococcal disease, Meningitis, Shingles, Human Papillomavirus, Tetanus, Pertussis (whooping cough). One of the major problems is that Universal Coverage of vaccines stops at age 19. Plus, many adults think that vaccines are just for children, or they are concerned with vaccine safety. The CDC states that vaccines are among the safest medical products available. The result is that of the vaccines for adults are used no greater than 32% by high risk Americans baring the flu shot and tetanus shots.
Over the years of successful campaigns, the CDC has reported that over 95% of children have been vaccinated for various diseases. The CDC states that lack of awareness, resources and knowledge about adult vaccines, infrastructure, and access to health care are causes for low vaccination percentages among adults. The average annual health care expenditures per American has nearly tripled since 1990 to approximately $3,000 per annum. To compound the problem, nearly 15.3% of the population does not have health care insurance, which makes preventative care “unimportant” to some who believe they cannot afford non-emergency medicine.
One proposal to pay for national health insurance calls for imposing a surtax on income tax bills of the top 1.2% of American households. The tax would start at 1% for couples making $350,000 – $500,000. The surtax would rise to 5.4% for households making more than a million dollars; this is lower than depression era recovery efforts. According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, very few small businesses would be affected. Plus, according to the proposal, small businesses that offer health insurance will see their cost reduced under the new plan. The tax increases of the House bill won’t take effect until 2011.
The Obama administration hopes that this tax increase will help pay for the record budget spending increases of the federal government, which has reached a total of $2.9 trillion in 2008. Mandatory spending now equals $1.788 trillion, an increase of 4.2%, this includes Social Security (+4.5%), Medicare (+5.2%), Medicaid and SCHIPS (+5.6%), Unemployment (+1.8%) and Interest on the National Dept (+9.2%). Discretionary spending equals $1.114 trillion, an increase of 3.1%, which includes double digit increases of 45.8% on the Global War on Terror, 12.1% on the Department of Defense, 18.7% for the Department of Veterans Affairs, 22% for the Department of State, and 13.1% for the Department of Transportation.