Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Quick Healthcare Round-up

There are so many moving parts to the healthcare debate right now, it would be tough to capture them all, so here are some quick thoughts.

On Monday the President told an audience in Pennsylvania that, " [t]he price of health care is one of the most punishing costs for families, businesses and our government," so the Democrat plan is to subject an additional 30 million people to these punishing costs. How exactly will that improve the situation?

My concern is that the current proposal does nothing more than further entrench the current employer-provided first-dollar coverage system that we have in place now. I thought the status quo was unsustainable.

But wait, you say. The standard GOP criticism is that the health care proposal is a government takeover. How can it entrench the current system and be a take over at the same time? For an answer, please see this provocatively titled blog post at Open Congress: With a Few Tweaks, the Senate Bill Could Allow Single-Payer State Plans

We keep hearing that 16% of GDP is healthcare, but much of the focus seems to be on health insurance premiums. What portion of that 16% do insurance premiums make up? I can't believe that is where the real opportunity for cost reduction is.

Focusing on insurance premiums seems a little like deciding our transportation policy would be that every American should have a car, then trying to achieve this goal by controlling the price of gas.

The buzzword of coverage has been endgame. I propose we devise and endgame for endgame.

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