April 17, 2005

Paying for Healthcare

WUWM_QUIZ.gifReaders of ALP know the difference between health care (the actual medical treatment given to those who need it) and the financing and payment for that health care. Apparently, Wake-Up Wal-Mart doesn't. The image at left is from their front page, and it asks a strangely-phrased question:

How many of Wal-Mart's 1.2 million U.S. employees DO NOT get health care from Wal-Mart?
The correct answer is not given as an option. Obviously, as a retail store, outside of its pharmacy, optometrist, and small medical aids, WM does not provide healthcare to any of its employees. Wal-Mart is not a doctor's office or a hospital; it is a retail store. It's not in the business of providing healthcare.

WuWM is actually complaining that Wal-Mart doesn't pay for the healthcare of a lot of its "associates" (which it mistakenly equates with the sub-category of "sales clerks").

WuWM phrases the question this way partly to make the question short, and partly because it doesn't want to bring up the obvious question -- why should employers be involved in the financing of their employees' healthcare at all? Private employers don't pay for employees' housing, education, food or recreation, so why healthcare?

Posted by Kevin on April, 17 2005 at 10:57 AM