Healthcare for which an individual chooses a private company that offers health insurance plans—which must be paid for on a monthly basis by the individual—is called private healthcare. There are many advantages and disadvantages associated with private healthcare.

Advantage - Time of Treatment

With private healthcare you often have the option of choosing when you will be treated 1. Countries with government controlled healthcare often have the problem of long waiting lists for doctors—depending upon the treatment that is needed 1. An appointment with a private doctor can usually be more imminent and scheduled according to your time table.

Advantage - Specialists and Hospitals

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With private healthcare, there is a greater choice and variety of specialists and hospitals 1. You may want to consult a certain specialist that has a good reputation, but with public healthcare the decision is not in your hands, as there are often rules and regulations governing who you can and cannot see. Private healthcare eliminates this problem to a great extent.

Advantage - Privacy

Private healthcare patients normally get their own room when being treated, allowing them to keep their privacy. This is advantageous over many countries that have government controlled healthcare as often times little privacy might be given. Depending upon the circumstance, people might be placed in hospital rooms that have other patients without being able to request private rooms.

Disadvantage - Discrimination

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In the U.S., some states, public and private hospitals are getting almost the same amount of Medicaid business. Despite this, private profit hospitals have shown discrimination against patients who are publicly insured with Medicaid on occasion. Reports have been filed that show hospitals will sometimes have a preference for families that are young and growing, as well as to healthier patients who have Medicaid, Blue Cross/Blue Shield or a commercial medical insurance policy.

Disadvantage - Uninsured Persons

A severe downside with private healthcare is that it leaves many people uninsured. This means that people without insurance may have to pay medical bills—that can reach extraordinary figures—without any outside help; often times proving to be a financial burden that is difficult to overcome.