Here is the final third of the response I got from a very committed and very thoughtful and very compassionate person working AND volunteering in the health care industry. It’s not personal until it’s personal.
To sum it all up…I am afraid that government-involved health care is unsustainable financially. I believe that people need to “have some skin in the game” when it comes to health care. Costs can only be contained by the people restricting their spending or the government restricting their spending for them. I do not want the government restricting my spending/taking away my freedoms. I would be afraid when my political side didn’t win in the elections- kinda like the idea in the bill that the unions paid less taxes on their health insurance plans than non-unionized people for comparable plans (because they support the democrats in power). And the people don’t seem to want to reduce the spending on their health care either- at least for now. People will spend lots of money to be healthy.
I do think that several things can be done to help the current situation, though. I think there are three problems: 1) a lack of affordability for a lot of people; 2) a lack of transparency for what we are actually paying for our health care; and 3) a lack of competition for insurance companies.
I would propose that we should make Medicaid progressive. Medicaid should be gradually reduced according to income. The cost of including more individuals could also be reduced by making only ESSENTIAL services covered. This would be middle ground for helping people get out of the “trap” of Medicaid and “entitlement syndrome” while also providing that those less economically fortunate be spared in essential situations. The government could also provide catastrophic coverage to all or to some- or even provide it at subsidized rates in a similar progressive fashion. This would provide that the individual whom develops cancer be treated, or other similar situations.
I would also propose that individual doctors offices and such must disclose their total fees and a detailed breakdown of the fees be posted in the office for services rendered. This would help individuals understand the “hidden fees” that we never see that our insurance company pays. This would also help us understand what we are paying for when we pay premiums to our insurance provider.
We should also allow insurance companies to sell policies between state lines. BlueCross/BlueShield of Alabama has 85% of the market share here in Alabama. They set the rates. They sell most of the policies. If other states could compete, then the insurance companies would be left without a monopoly.
I just don’t trust the government, man. They don’t save when we have good years. They SHOULD be prepared financially for a recession. They ought to have extra money like families who save in case they lose their job…but they don’t because they’re politicians…and spending gets them re-elected. I don’t trust the government who is trillions of dollars in debt, who is always in the red with regards to the postal service, who is always in the red in regards to Freddie and Fannie, who is in the red with social security and Medicare…they can’t run anything. The government has no sense of sensible governing…or they wouldn’t take such expensive trips to all parts of the world in the name of representing the people…I just don’t trust the government…I think it will hurt more people in the long run than who are currently hurting now in regards to their health.
What do you think?