Medical Bills

Do Rich People Live Longer?

rich people benefits, living longer, healthcare inequality
Sometimes it feels like rich people may have won the metaphorical lottery. In addition to being wealthy, there is evidence that clearly shows that wealthy people are living longer as a direct result of their wealth.

Wealthy people have access to a number of resources that help them manage the risks in their lives better than those who are without those resources. Wealthy people have access to preventative medicine. Preventative medicine is one of the keys controlling the possibility of contracting illness that affect longevity.  Going for regular check ups, having your eye health examined, and getting your teeth cleaned are some of the preventive care related tasks that the wealthy are able to manage with relative ease. Numerous health related surveys have shown that certain illnesses have a higher likelihood of hypertension, stroke, or diabeties-all known to either debilitate the person that these illnesses strike or even cause death in some cases.

Access to ongoing medical care is another way the rich are able to live longer. When they are stuck by illness they are able to go the doctor and manage their illnesses better. Wealthy individuals can purchase health insurance that provides access to experimental treatments, homeopathic care, and medicines that would otherwise be too expensive to purchase without insurance.

Wealthy people also seem to engage in fewer of the activities or habits that are considered to increase the risk of death such as smoking and excessive drinking. Smoking increases people’s risk of death by cancer or stroke. Excessive drinking has also been shown to increase people’s risk of death.

People who live in higher crime areas have rates of death due to violence at younger ages. Numerous studies have observed that having a lower income can adversely affect your life due to stress, health, and where you live.

Wealth enables people to proactively manage their health, plan for long-term care, and choose where they live. Proactive management of one’s health is an integral part of increasing the possibility of living a longer and healthier life. This is the unspoken benefit of being wealthy.

In 2010, the Affordable Health Medical Care Act or Obamacare was passed by Congress after a bitter battle concerning the bill’s cost to implement and manage across the 50 United States. Because of this bill millions of poorer Americans now have access to ongoing and preventative medical care. Preventative appointments covered by Obamacare include the following: prenatal services, some mental health related visits, and annual checkups that typically include: gynecological visits and more.  Regardless of which side of the issue you find yourself no one can argue that the number of people covered by some level of insurance has increased since the law’s implementation.

Many physicians, politicians, and advocacy groups are watching with great interest to see if having a comprehensive level of health care access makes a difference in longevity statistics and quality of life related measures over time. In order to measure the affect of the law accurately it will likely take several years of data to create an accurate snap shot of the affect of the law on people’s longevity.

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