I live in a country where "basic" health insurance is mandatory, and the government sets the minimum deductible too, though you can opt for a higher deductible to pay less on your insurance policy. Plus, we can buy more insurance to get the dentals covered, at least, partly. People under a certain income level get government subsidies.
Well, the subsidies get lower every year, while the insurance prices grow, and deductibles only get higher. Right now it's about 800 euros for a family with two grown-ups. Children under 18 are covered for free, but after 18 they have to pay their own insurance costs. Since health insurance is mandatory, there is no way out of it.
The regional authorities started their own program of partly covering the costs of "low-income" families who they define as those with an income higher (!) than the government determined minimum. While the regional taxes paid by businesses and home owners are rising and those barely making a middle class wage are getting broke on paying their mandatory health costs, the welfare recipients and those working at a low wage get everything nearly for free.
At the same time, in countries like UK people get free medical care since NHS is financed by the taxes so they never have to worry about losing their job and not being able to pay the doctor. The quality is often better than in my own country plus they have a possibility to visit a private clinic, too.
That all made me think. In America, lots of folks are against "socialised health care", but the truth is that healthcare is already more or less socialised in every Western country. The modern insurance system is only good for making insurance companies richer, it has really nothing to do with any "market in health care" or any such thing. I've never though I'd say it, but as of now I'm ready to support our local socialists who advocate for the National Health Fund with low premiums.
It's interesting to me that while conservative Christians in the USA are often the most vocal supporters of stay-at-home mothers, they are also those who object the most against a single payer system, or however it's called. It's hardly a secret, that a lot of American women only keep on working for the health insurance. The system as of now is hardly family-friendly.
We can all wax romantic about the times past when you paid the doctor out of your pocket, but with all the modern high-tech treatments it's utopian to think we can go back to them good old days. And as long as programs like Medicare and similar exist, and emergency rooms treat people for free, the health care is already socialised. Right now, middle class folks are punished the most which strikes me as unfair.
Feel free to share your thoughts and experiences in the comments.