In healthcare, what comes first: the chicken or the egg? – Part 2/3

To compare universal health care in China to private sector health care, I’m going to use Wal-Mart as an example to explain why we cannot rely on the private sector when it comes to the importance of health care and the quality of life.

In the private sector in the US, Wal-Mart did not achieve success because a sorcerer waved a magic wand and “POOF” suddenly Wal-Mart is everywhere as if a light switch were turned on.  The first Wal-Mart store opened in July 1962. By 1967, there were 24 stores. Today, forty-five years later, Wal-Mart has 2.2 million employees/associates worldwide and serves 200 million customers each week at more than 10,000 stores in 27 countries.

But China’s challenge is to serve 1.3 billion Chinese compared to Wal-Mart providing health care for 2.2 million of its workers. There is a HUGE difference in the numbers and China  hasn’t had forty-five years to build the infrastructure of this new universal health care plan.

Of course, a China critic may point out Wal-Mart’s success because it was a private sector business but that same critic, out of ignorance or by design, will not mention what Christian Science says about Wal-Mart’s health care for its employees:

“In addition to stopping the retaliations and respecting workers’ right to free speech and assembly, OUR Wal-Mart members would like to see the retailer offer more dependable work schedules, affordable healthcare for full-time workers, and a living wage ($13 per hour minimum).

“Wal-Mart has been advertising that they are a family-oriented company. And if this is how family is treated, then I would rather not have a family at all,” says Ms. Cruz.”

In the private sector, the way corporations/businesses treat employees varies from company to company. There is no universal standard of treatment, and there never will be unless the private sector eventually is owned by one global corporation.

Business shows how Wal-Mart treats its employees: “Wal-Mart Guts Its Employee Health Care Plan and Raises Premiums—Rates are expected to climb by more than 40 percent for some employees. Combined with high deductibles, employees are complaining that their health care will now eat up to 20 percent of their annual pay.”

Continued on October 30, 2012, In healthcare, what comes first: the chicken or the egg? – Part 3 or return to Part 1


Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

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3 Responses to In healthcare, what comes first: the chicken or the egg? – Part 2/3

  1. […] via In healthcare, what comes first: the chicken or the egg? – Part 2/3 « iLook China. […]

  2. merlin says:

    Hey Lloyd, no offense, but honestly I think paying for an expensive healthcare system based on getting hacked to pieces and drowning in pills that create new problems only fills the pockets of those that continue this thing we call “healthcare”. Real healthcare focuses on preventing problems, and when a problem occurs fix it like the spider in the story of the spider vs the hornet.

    There was once a spider that made a web. A hornet came along and got caught in the web. The spider ran out to wrap it up, but the hornet put up a fight. In the end, the spider won even though it was stung by the hornet and the venom was beginning to slowly kill the spider. The spider quickly dropped down to the ground and ran into a bush, upon closer inspection it was munching on an herb that was healing the wound and stopping the venom of the hornet. It crawled back up into the web ready for a feast.

    This story was from a chinese book of medicine. Our modern medicine is partialy from

    • Merlin,

      What you say is true and that has been a problem for Medicare. However, as for Obamacare, I’ve been reading a lot about it through AARP’s newsletters and magazines that have stuck to facts and not emotional opinions making all sorts of exaggerated claims and false statements. AARP is the American Assocaition of Retired People with 35.7 million members. AARP has stuck to the facts and the truth and becasue of this it has been under attack by the critics and enemies of Obama and his national health care program. AARP is “a nonprofit, nonpartisan membership organization for people age 50 and over … dedicated to enhancing quality of life for all as we age.”

      There’s a lot of exaggeration out there and many false claims about Obamacare, but I found this piece at the Huffington Post offering some honesty about the program: (In fact, Obamacare in the US may save money according to the Congressional Budget Office and there are several key points to the program that may explain why there are interests attempting to kill this program.)

      1. More generic drugs are approved by the Food and Drug Administration and there will be increased rebates on drugs (both lowering drug cost)
      2. Medicare is expanded to smaller clinics and hospitals
      3. Insurers cannot drop clients once they’re sick, nor can they charge more for clients with pre-existing conditions or who are sick
      4. Coverage is not dropped due to patient’s age (no more lifetime limits)
      5. Doctors are paid on their quality of care, not the number of patients they see (This is important because this punishes doctors that have too many patients with complications that need more medication and care).6. New taxes on pharmaceutical companies, indoor tanning, insurance companies and a 0.9 percent increase of taxes on those earning $200,000 or more (all to account for the increase in healthcare spending)

      This is the conclusion to the piece in the Huffington Post: “This law is not socialism. It’s nowhere near it. In fact, it actually helps insurers by bringing in more clients. In no way will the government control which doctors or hospitals you visit and your lifestyle. It is merely an expansion of what we already have — a protection meant for the people. In the end, the government serves to protect its people. That’s why we have government agencies inspecting your food, enforcing building regulations, keeping your wages and hours humane, providing your children with what they need to succeed, and protecting your neighborhoods. We as citizens must accept that there are aspects of our lives for which we need a government. Healthcare is one of them.”

      To discover the motivation behind the real CROOKS and CHEATers and learn what major poltical party supports them, you may want to read this piece from Business

      Then in May NBC News reported on one example of Medicare fraud that caust the program $452 million. One part of Obamacare was to go after these crooks.

      Here’s another piece in The New York Times: U.S. Warning to Hospitals and Medicare Bill Abuses

      In conclusion:

      “The administration said it had undertaken record-high collections and prosecutions against fraud, contending that prosecutions in 2011 were 75 percent higher than in 2008.

      “In a report last February about the administration’s efforts, officials said the federal government had received about $2.4 billion in fiscal 2011 from health care fraud settlements and judgments.”

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