Germany's Universal Insurance Structure

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Germany’s universal insurance structure is modeled after a welfare system where everyone pays into the system. Coverage includes dental care, drugs, cash for glasses, and grants for young moms. Germans pay into the system just like most countries and whenever someone becomes ill or has an accident, they receive money. While Germany offers compulsory insurance to its citizens, people are free to buy their insurance from private “sickness finds”. These sickness funds are nonprofit and cannot deny any citizen due to preexisting conditions (Five Capitalistic Democracies & How They Do It). Japan has a universal healthcare system that is typically based on salaries. Japan breaks their health care down into National Health Insurance, which is a community- based system, and Employee’s Health Insurance (Healthcare in Japan). All citizens are required to have health insurance and if they cannot afford it, they receive public assistance (Five Capitalistic Democracies & How They Do It).In Japan, dental care and prescription drugs are covered and prices are determined by negotiations between a council of insurers, citizens, and providers. The government sets a price ceiling to control costs and ensure that prices do not rise (Cooper, Taylor). A major difference between Germany and Japan is how much each country spends on health care. While Japan’s health care accounts for 8.5 percent of its GDP, Germany’s health care consumes 10.4 percent of its GDP (Knieps, 2010). In fact, Japan
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