Sunday, July 9, 2017

Healthcare in the US

The right way to allocate health care expenditures is the same way that any scarce resource should be allocated.  Let the free market do the allocation.  The result will be better products, lower prices and better patient-doctor relationships.

The wrong way is to have the government do it, either through a bureacratic nightmare of insurance regulations or through a single payer system.  The result will be a dramatic worsening in health care quality, availability and the elimination of any patient-doctor relationship.  We've already observed this in today's health care system.  The pressures of costs will ensure that compensation for medical personnel will fall and, as a result, people who might consider trash pick-up for a career will become, instead, America's care givers.

The free market can't deal with "pre-existing" conditions  It is simply not possible.  Thus, if you wish to deal with "pre-existing" conditions you need a separate welfare program designed strictly for pre-existing conditions.  It won't be first class.  No government program ever is.  But that's the price you should pay if you fail to insure yourself until you have "pre-existing conditions."  That leaves medicaid for those who truly cannot afford insurance and/or  health care.

Dealing with "pre-existing conditions" and providing care for the indigent is actually a relatively small problem.  The difficulties in the current morass have to do with trying to extend regulations into the great middle class.  That won't work.  That will simply destroy health care access and quality for middle class Americans and will increase health care costs dramatically.  The result: an incompetent, corrupt, and inefficient health care system.

Insurance companies should be free to sell whatever insurance policies they wish to sell and consumers should be free to buy whatever insurance policies they want to buy.  Period.  So long as there is no fraud in representation, the free market should be allowed to work unhindered without government bureaucratic interference.  Ditto for health care.  Absent fraud, doctors and hospitals should be free to offer whatever products they wish at whatever prices they choose.

Hospitals should not be required to take in patients who can't pay.  If it is desired to provide care for those who can't pay, then state-funded hospitals should be built to provide care for patients who cannot afford free market hospitals.

If the steps described herein are taken, health care will be top quality, available to all and relatively inexpensive -- much cheaper than what we observe today.  Going the other way means incredibly poor health care, poor access for middle class and lower income Americans, the elimination of any patient-doctor relationship, and outright denial of health care services for many services that would be routinely provided in a free market health care system.

This is not rocket science.

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