14.9.16

ALL IN ON THE CONRAIL OPTION.

Never mind the ways in which the so-called Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act went wrong, it's not enough government intervention.
The latest U.S. Census Bureau data clearly illustrates that the need for a single-payer, Medicare-for-all health program has never been more urgent, the advocacy group Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP) said Tuesday.

The census found that 29 million people went uninsured last year, including 3.7 million children, and that deductibles and other out-of-pocket costs have continued to rise well after the Affordable Care Act (ACA) went into law in 2010.
The state is that grand fiction by which everyone attempts to live at the expense of everyone else.  And the only response to government failure is ... more actions by the national government.
[Pediatrician and association president Robert] Zarr added, the bureau neglected to mention that the quality of healthcare in the U.S. has also decreased, with rising copay and deductible costs and narrow provider networks—an effect known as "hollowing out."

"That tens of millions of people will remain uninsured under our current arrangements is perhaps the most compelling argument for why our nation needs to swiftly adopt a single-payer system, where everyone, without exception, would be covered and get first-dollar coverage for all medically necessary care," he said.

"Too many people have skimpy policies that deter them from seeking care when they should get treatment, and that leave them unprotected against financial hardship when illness or injury strikes. And their number is growing."

Meanwhile, the recent announcement by health insurance giant Aetna that it would pull out of ACA exchanges in 11 states—and similar actions by United Health Group and other private insurers—shows the corporations cannot be trusted to protect their patients' financial security, Zarr added.

"Our patients and our economy can't wait any longer for an effective remedy to our healthcare woes," he said. "The stakes are too high. We need to swiftly move beyond the ACA to a single-payer national health insurance program."
Yes, that Medicare reimbursement rate is doing a lot to make sure that participants in the part of the health industry that is run along single payer lines get that first-dollar coverage.  The best fix is to make sure that everyone's physician is subject to monopsonistic buying practices?  I'm not having it.  Neither is Reason's Shikha Dalmia.  "Obamacare has become such a quagmire that the proposed 'fixes' may create an even bigger mess." What are those fixes?  Mandatory purchase of insurance, with a stiffer penalty for not buying.  A Government Issue policy.  "Obamacare tried to remake a sector that constitutes one-eighth of the economy from the ground up. But it made a mess that it just doesn't know how to fix. That will be President Obama's legacy. He should be worried. Very worried."

But we're likely to see the public option, or the nationalization, followed by the inevitable crash.  There's still time to move toward medical savings accounts and interstate competition among insurers and greater commercial freedom for providers of medical care, particularly that involving machinery and prescriptions as opposed to examinations and surgery.

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