How did we get here? Healthcare in America

 American healthcare is distinctly different from most other western nations. Employer based healthcare makes healthcare unattainable to many and a constant expense to almost all Americans. How did we come to make healthcare and employment a package deal? In the early 1920’s the first iterations of health insurance came to be as hospitals and doctors formed groups to provide insurance. These insurances are still around today, they are Blue Cross and Blue Shield. These plans were made to make healthcare more accessible as hospitals began turning larger profits, however, these plans were almost exclusively purchased on an individuals personal basis. When World War II happened and the market crashed, healthcare operations took a turn. Employers had to work to create incentives for their employees as wages were frozen, as a result healthcare became a selling point for employment. Only a few years later healthcare became tax exempt, making employer based healthcare even more attractive. These incentives of more accessible and affordable healthcare pushed Americans to rely on their employer for health insurance. j and expensive. Americans often stay stuck in jobs they hate out of fear of losing healthcare. Though the origins of employer based healthcare show the process made sense at the time, our society has changed and employer based healthcare has made healthcare unattainable to individuals. Path dependence has kept us stuck in a system that no longer serves society and makes the basic necessity of healthcare expensive and out of reach to individuals. This has created a reliance on employment and keeps people stuck in jobs they do not serve them out of fear.

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