This is the last of a series of commentaries, written from a free market, individual-centered perspective, examining the serious deficiencies of our current health-care system, the underlying root causes of those problems, the looming government fiscal catastrophe secondary to health-care entitlement spending, the failure of the recently passed health-care “reform” to address the grave problems facing our nation related to health-care delivery, the harm the recently passed health-care “reform” will cause to our seriously ill economy; and a proposal for a framework to truly, effectively, and sustainably reform our health-care delivery system. This report concludes outlining a framework for true and viable health-care reform.
True Health-Care Reform: – Addressing the Uninsured
These changes – a more patient-centered utilization and payment system, health-care insurance regulation reform, medical malpractice tort reform, and Federal tax treatment of health-care premiums and expenditure reform would significantly decrease the cost of health-care and health-care insurance. Making insurance affordable for more individuals and families would have a dramatic effect on lowering the number of the uninsured. Not only would many more persons have health-care insurance but they would have better and more responsive health-care.
The above proposed reform would greatly reduce, but not eliminate entirely, the numbers of the uninsured. For those who find themselves temporarily or chronically uninsured, instituting a simple Federal voucher program, for those who financially qualify, to purchase private health-care could to a great extent address their lack of coverage. Likely, this would also require a government agency to help some persons navigate this more consumer involved system. But, such focused and limited government intervention is compassionate, effective, and financially viable; and is much preferable to the current 2nd (3rd or worse) rate Medicaid system which is causing massive state and Federal budget overruns.
True Health-Care Reform: – Reversing the Governmental Fiscal Crisis and the Economic Downturn
Such true reform, utilizing traditional American free market principles, personal freedoms, and values that made our great land the global economic powerhouse and bastion of freedom, would not only reverse the crippling health-care cost growth threatening the financial viability of individuals, families, businesses, and state and Federal governments, and would not only decrease the numbers of the uninsured and improve the quality and responsiveness of health-care system, but would also stave off the inevitable governmental fiscal meltdown that will result from the current levels of entitlement growth and resultant deficit spending. Additional policy reform that shifts government health-care entitlement programs from a 3rd party payer system to a more patient-centered system, implementing tort reform, and effectively addressing Medicare and Medicaid fraud would drastically lower government health-care expenditure. Lastly, these proposed reforms would invigorate the economy: stimulating the small and large business environment, increasing employment, increasing tax revenues, and decreasing the numbers of individual requiring government support, again decreasing governmental (taxpayer) liability.
The resultant dramatic economic and fiscal reversal would create money now (not borrowed from the future and the future well being of our posterity) for prudent government programs as well as investment in our country’s infrastructure and future, and still lessen our taxpayer burden. Most of all, a strong economy and more limited government involvement would restore to the citizens of this country our unalienable human dignity and right to work and to support ourselves and our families, to make our own decisions, and to live our lives as we see fit.
Call to Action: Though passed by an appalling political process and with complete disregard of our Constitution, though containing ineffective and even harmful policy, though disregarding the inalienable rights given to us by our Creator, the passed health-care reform bill is not the end of the debate but rather a new beginning. It is an opportunity to contrast irresponsible policy with prudent policy, to contrast misconceived policy with thoughtful policy, and to contrast policy that places government in the center with policy that places the individual in the center. Get in the fight and stay in the fight. We have learned, the hard way, the consequences of leaving it up to the career politicians. Contact your legislators and demand they exercise the privilege the voters gave them to represent us to effectively address health-care delivery and the other problems facing our states and nation. Learn about the issues and talk to others about the issues. We must join and financially support conservative think tanks that promote traditional American economic principles, personal freedoms, and values; and that shine the light of accountability on irresponsible or faulty government action and policy. Those organizations include The Heritage Foundation, The State Policy Network, The Commonwealth Foundation and your state’s conservative think tank (see SPN for your state’s organization). We must join and support our local grass roots organizations like theYork 9-12 Patriots, York County Action, York Campaign for Liberty, and others, so we can take back the political process that has become corrupt and ineffective. We must work to bring up, from the grass root level, candidates – principled persons (Republicans, Democrats, and Independents) who will actually solve problems, who will respect the Constitution of the United States, and who will honor the “consent of the governed” entrusted to them by the citizens of our counties, states, and country.
God Bless and God Bless America!