The Role of Government in the U.S. Health Care System


Government represents or at least should represent the public interest. It is people who elect officials and put their trust in them. Citizens of the U.S. grant them the power to manage the variety of spheres and ensure the public is satisfied. The role of the U.S. government in the health care system is to provide guidance and regulate it (Knickman & Kovner, 2015). It has various legislative mechanisms to direct the system in addressing the needs of every group of the population equally and maintain the quality of service. Therefore, it is the government’s duty to maintain health as a right granted to every American citizen.

Government as a Legislator

Officials at higher levels have the opportunity to serve as policy initiators as they see health care on a totally different level than the rest of the people. A House member, for instance, views healthcare at the level of the whole nation with a multitude of hospitals across the U.S. At his or her disposition, there are reports on the issues of counties, states, and cities with all of their health facilities. He or she analyzes them in order to determine the intervention needed to improve issues that are more persistent and well-spread than the others.

One of the biggest issues is the affordability of health care (Geyman, 2016). Many people become excluded from the system. The government is entitled to protect the right of all people and ensure every citizen has access to it. Therefore, it creates programs such as Medicare and Medicaid to attend to the needs of the public. It also passes laws that ban inappropriate and discriminative practices in the sphere of health care.

Health is a right and not a privilege as the right to pursue happiness guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution is impossible to exercise without being healthy. Also, it is a right because the government has to create an environment where each person has an opportunity for personal growth that can also be hindered by poor health. Despite the fact that most of the medicine is private, the government does all in its power to make it affordable turning a privilege into a right.

Government as Financial Agent

According to the article “Years of Attack Leave Obamacare a More Government-Focused Health Law” by Robert Pear, the public sector remains the biggest contributor in making heal care affordable (Pear, 2017). Government allocates billions and trillions of taxpayers’ money to ensure everyone is able to have their health issues examined and addressed. This enlarges the role of the government in this sector. The article informs the understanding of the significance of the government’s position due to the reported increase in its financial involvement. Still, access to healthcare remains an issue for many, despite the government’s continuous effort to cover it with more funding, grants, and insurances. According to Stabile and Thomson (2014), this issue persists not only in the U.S. This urges officials to reconsider their role in managing national health care. As such, a shift is noted towards closer monitoring, evaluation, and measurement prior to national-level economic interventions. This significantly impacts healthcare delivery as more informed decisions will be made, and the rights of American citizens to receive better healthcare will be protected. Again, the development of such performance-measuring mechanisms is a task for which government officials are responsible. It is their duty to be more efficient in maintaining the quality and availability of health care and protecting citizens’ comfort.


All things considered, the government plays a significant role in health care. It fulfills its duty as a top manager by overseeing the process of care delivery on a national level. It allocates funds to develop the quality, safety, and availability of health care to the public. The U.S. government also assesses and measures the performance of the system in order to make informed decisions and create appropriate laws to ensure society’s rights to health are maintained properly.


Folland, S., Goodman, A. C., & Stano, M. (2016). The economics of health and health care: Pearson international edition (7th ed.). New York, NY: Routledge.

Geyman, J. (2016). What role should the government have in U.S. health care? Huffington Post. Web.

Knickman, J. R., & Kovner, A. R. (Eds.). (2015). Health care delivery in the united states (11th ed.). New York, NY: Springer Publishing

Pear, R. (2017). Years of attack leave Obamacare a more government-focused health law. New York Times. Web.

Stabile, M., & Thomson, S. (2014). The changing role of government in financing health care: An international perspective. Journal of Economic Literature, 52(2), 480-518.

Find out the price of your paper