However, those of us who have studied the issue know that the most efficient and least costly plan would be a single payer system. We also know it could be done immediately if the politicians were all on board. Of course, most Republicans blanch at installing such a sensible system just as they shuddered at Social Security. Pragmatism is not their strong suit. Ideology trumps everything. Here are a few facts that bolster my contention that a single payer plan would be the best way to go.
- The nation spent $2.4 trillion on health care in 2008, and yet 46 million Americans have no at all.
- Attaining will almost inevitably cost most Americans - businesses and taxpayers - more. But the cost of doing nothing is more extreme.
- The insurance industry try, most successfully, to avoid insuring the sick, or those at risk of being sick. (think pre-existing conditions). Profit is, of course, the motive.
- Private insurers spend more than 15 percent of the money they collect in premiums on administrative costs. Medicare spends about 2 percent. Marketing is part of the administrative expenses and there would be no need for advertising in a universal Medicare plan.
- Hundreds of thousands of people are employed in administrative positions in every doctor's office, nursing home and hospital due to the myriad of insurance forms. That would be eliminated under a universal system.
- State and Federal agencies add to the cost of medical care by having to monitor the insurance companies for fraud and abuse. If the profit motive were gone the cost would be much less.
I know that right now someone is thinking, "where will all those displaced workers find jobs in this economy?" Some of them would switch to work for the government. Nonetheless, this clouds the issue. The economy must have health care reform or the whole house of cards will fall. The United States, industries, small business operators and individuals are drowning under the current system. Obama knows that health care reform has to be the third leg of his recovery program. "If we don't tackle health care," he said at the White House health care summit last week, "we're going to break the bank"
To read the plan copy this in your browser: http://www.barackobama.com/index.phppdf/issues/HealthCareFullPlan.pdf
Support the The , ("Expanded & Improved Medicare for ALL"). bill, HR 676, Please write or call your Congressperson today.