Illegal immigrants in the United States (US) have long been a topic of debate for policymakers and the public. The rationale about them is that they do not pay taxes; they add to the costs of taxpayers and use up funds in resources meant for assisting citizens and legal immigrants (the legal citizens). Therefore, they are perceived as a threat to the US economy. The true impacts of illegal immigrants on the US economy are discussed by debating over the economic benefits as well as economic costs of these immigrants. The negative impacts, discussed first, presented the decreases in low skilled jobs’ wage rates for legal immigrants and citizens instigated by illegal immigrants, the social services such as educations and healthcare that they
With the economy of the United States in shambles, illegal immigration and the effects it has on health care can no longer be ignored. America has a whole needs to be concerned and well informed of the issues rather than collecting information piecemeal by way of media or other biased groups. If illegal immigration stays its present course the American tax-payer will continue to fund the well being of individuals who have broken federal rules and regulations and are being supported by law abiding citizens. This argument is not about individual rights to live and prosper. It is not about race or discrimination of any sort. It is only about the effects on health care that I am addressing.
In an article that looked at the immigrant healthcare needs of the United States, Dudas (2012) found that
For many illegal aliens, seeking healthcare is undermined by the fear of being deported. Many would rather suffer through an illness or injury than seek care for fear that they will be sent back to Mexico. Unfortunately, but the time that they finally get to a point where it is absolutely necessary to obtain care, the cost of that care has become a much larger figure than it would have been had they obtained care sooner.
Everyday people are sent to the hospital. Not only are they in fear of losing their life but also in fear of being in debt due to the prices of health care treatment they need. But what if this patient happens to be an illegal alien? What if the patient has a foreign illness that needs to be cured so it does not spread? Is it morally correct to deny this person treatment because he or she lacks citizenship or a valid visa? Or should illegal aliens be treated just like any other patients by having a right to health care?
There are several arguments spotlighting the effect of illegal immigration on current rising health care cost. To this point, illegal immigrants and elected representatives across the country are unable to deny the increased costs placed upon the backs of American taxpayers due to the rise in health care and health care insurance cost. A bill initiated in Indiana will demand local hospitals create a report regarding the costs associated with treating illegal immigrants. Additionally, on a countrywide level, there is an ongoing endeavor to push illegal immigrant children toward federally funded Children’s Health Insurance by the governing body which in turn will effectively raise the current tax rates for all Americans. As an alternative, some policymakers are trying to use creative language in order to guarantee that illegal immigrants were blocked from obtaining health care services (Maxwell & Adolfo 324). For undocumented immigrants within the United States, acquiring health related services or care systematically increases the cost for American taxpayers across the board. Health care providers, Health care insurance companies and both the state and federally supplemented health care funds ( i.e. Medicaid) are forced to close the gap on the negative revenue return by increasing cost of services due to the excessive use and write off of public health care funds and services by illegal immigrants.
In the area of healthcare, the influx of illegals has proven to put a huge burden in all areas of the system. In California over the last decade many hospitals and emergency rooms have closed due to the illegals being treated there and not being able to pay the bills from the hospital. Right now, California out of the 50 states is last in the number of emergency rooms per million people (Jones, 2012, #6.). The insurance premiums for citizens keep increasing because when the illegal’s go to an emergency room
Undocumented immigrants should not be included in the ACA because it will lead to an increase of overcrowding in healthcare facilities. Admittance availability at healthcare facilities is limited due to the closure of hospitals and insufficient amounts of available beds. According to Maurio & Corzine (2013), the number of hospitals in California has decreased by 5%, while state population has expanded by 8%. A patient’s waiting period to see a physician in healthcare facilities care can take hours. The average waiting period in most emergency departments is eight hours and 17 minutes per person (Lin, 2010). With the current average
There have been legislative bills that have limited the access that illegal immigrants have to medical care, whether it be private insurance or with federal help such as state funded resources like Medical. For example the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 restricts medical care for illegal immigrants. Jeffrey Kullgren a medical student at the Michigan State University College of Human Medicine, argues that having severe limitations on health care services threatens the public’s health. He argues that the original purposes of the act were to reduce illegal immigration and preserve resources yet the act burdens health care providers and endangers the public’s health. The act stated that it was made in order to “remove the incentive for illegal immigration” and so that “individual aliens not burden the public benefits system”. These were the argument made in order to place eligibility restrictions for service made available by the local, state and federal governments. Although there were exceptions to the act, such as being able to get emergency care and immunizations, it still made getting proper health care very difficult. Placing these kinds of restrictions on people Kullgren argues has consequences on health. One is that it leads to greater waiting times and increase cost which reduces the efficiency of medical facilities. Another is that it can affect the lives of the American born children of immigrants. Although they are able to receive medical services, their parents are afraid to seek health care because they believe that they can get deported. Or they are not sure of whether their children are able to get medical coverage. Another negative result due to the act, Kullgren states, is that public resources are not being effectively used. It costs more to treat emergency situations that could have been easily prevented or that could have
The problem with healthcare is that it's too expensive. Most people can't afford it and many illegal immigrants are taking advantage of America’s health care program by applying for jobs that provide free health care they are exploiting the systems. Then they are taking up most of the jobs and health care for people who needs it the most. Then the current health care program is too complicated for people to comprehend and properly understand, and people are being under and over cared for.
Situations like Maria’s have become fairly common here in the United States. In 2014, Pew research estimated that there are 11.3 million unauthorized immigrants in the United States (Krogstad & Passel). In 1986, the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA) made it possible for unauthorized citizens to qualify for Emergency Medicaid. Moreover, any hospital which is eligible to receive Medicaid reimbursements is required to treat ANY patient with emergency medical treatment (Sultan). Prior to the Affordable Care Act (ACA), hospitals could also receive reimbursements for patients who those who needed non-emergent
County Hospitals that are already underfunded to provide indigent and uninsured care for citizens are also providing health services for the immigrants. Local Law Enforcement and City and County jails deal with those immigrants that break the law and are having to absorb those costs until they can be handed off to Federal Immigration services for deportation.
The ethical right for individuals to have access to health care already has a form of legal binding within the United States as seen in the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act. “In 1986, Congress passed the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA), which forbids Medicare-participating hospitals from “dumping” patients out of emergency departments” (Pozgar, 2010, p. 221). The act provides that:
Illegal immigrants usually hold jobs that have bad conditions and worse pay. Oftentimes, these jobs are found in sectors such as agriculture, construction, food-handling and manufacturing (Dwyer). Unfortunately for the illegal individuals who acquire these jobs, they have no access to comprehensive health care, though their line of work tends to demand it. Although illegal immigrants are consequently strapped for cash, many of them will not visit primary care physicians for fear of being deported. This sets up a vicious cycle: individuals get sick yet ignore the signs. When illnesses get remarkably worse and are too severe to treat at doctors' offices, the individuals then go to emergency rooms, where the cost is considerably greater. More often than not, the immigrants cannot afford to pay their hospital bills. The cost is then covered by the medical institutions and tax-payer dollars (Wolf). While some argue that illegal migrants do not
Contrary to this, others believe that illegal immigrants threaten the United States HealthCare System, Madeline Pelner Cosman stated, “In 1994, 74987 anchor babies in California hospital maternity unit cost $215 million and constituted 36 percent of