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Saturday, 20 June 2015

Health care

In 1938 the New Zealand Social Security Act provided a pioneering state medical service. Stimulated by its success the British economist and civil servant William Beveridge published his report proposing a full welfare state for Britain.

World Health Day is held each year on April 7th to celebrate the founding of the World Health Organisation on that date in 1948. It's headquarters are in Geneva (see below).

By Yann Forget - Wikipedia Commons

The post war UK Labour government took heed of Beveridge's report and on July 5, 1948 they created a public funded healthcare system, the National Health Service as part of their new welfare state. The aim of the founders of the NHS was that the state should care for its citizens "from the cradle to the grave."

Aneurin Bevan (1897-1960). the Labour minister of health, was the architect of the UK National Health Service. He resigned in 1951 in protest at the introduction of prescription charges for dental care and spectacles.

Leaflet concerning the launch of the NHS in England and Wales.

President Lyndon B. Johnson signed Medicare, a health insurance program for elderly Americans, into law on July 30, 1965.

The bill-signing ceremony took place at the Truman Library in Independence, Missouri. Former President Harry S. Truman was enrolled as Medicare's first beneficiary and received the first Medicare card. Johnson wanted to recognize Truman, who, in 1945, had become the first president to propose national health insurance, an initiative that was opposed by Congress at the time.

 President Johnson signing the Medicare amendment. Also Harry S. Truman (seated) and his wife, Bess, are on the far right

Medicaid, a state and federally funded program that offers health coverage to certain low-income people, was also signed into law by President Johnson on July 30, 1965, as an amendment to the Social Security Act.

The National Health Service in England and Wales employs 1.3 million people – nearly 5 per cent of the working population. It is the world's fourth largest employer after the US Defence Department, Walmart and the Chinese army.

An American baseball player only needs to spend one day in the major leagues to earn free healthcare for life.

Over 95% of the world’s population has health problems, with over a third having more than five ailments.

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