Monday, April 27, 2009

How do we solve the health care problem in the US?

Extend Medicare to include everybody.  

Nationalizing health care is probably a better long-term solution following best practices from other developed countries.  However, this is probably unworkable given our entrenched special interests infrastructure - insurance companies, hospitals, phramaceutical companies, third-party administrators, equipment manufacturers, doctors, etc. 

So, why not take a small step first.  Medicare provides a workable foundation and it is already in place. Why not take advantage of it.  Prices and rates with suppliers would then be negotiated on a national basis.  Can you imagine the negotiating power we would have?

How do we fund this? The same way it is funded today but helped by a taxable income increase resulting from employers and individuals who don't have to pay for medical insurance anymore and savings from a properly, and freely, administed plan that can negotiate better pricing from suppliers.   

We could also continue the practice of offering optional private insurance to enhance the basic offering for those who can afford it.  

Would the quality of care go down?  Probably not.  But even if it does, wouldn't you feel better now that everybody can get the basic medical care they deserve.  I know, I would.

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