The government should not only not pay for all medical care, it shouldn’t pay for any medical care. The government has drastically interfered in the health care industry, which has driven up prices dramatically. The government then blames the free market, even though there hasn’t been a free market in health care for decades.
Unfortunately, most Americans don’t remember what medical care used to be like. In the 1950’s, when there was no Medicare, no Medicaid, and very little interference from the government, prices were cheap and the quality of care was high. Despite government involvement, technology has still improved, although not nearly as much as it would have in a true free market. With better technology, there is certainly some care that is superior today. But overall, the medical system was far superior 50 years ago when there was little government.
In the 1950’s, you could buy a cheap health insurance policy that protected you from a catastrophic event. It wasn’t a big deal if you had to pay for your drugs or a regular visit to the doctor. In fact, the doctor often times came to your house. How is that for good service? If you had a baby or had to spend a few nights in the hospital, it might cost you a week’s pay. Today, without insurance, it would probably cost you several month’s pay.
If Medicare had never been enacted, it would be cheaper for someone today to just pay for a visit to the doctor than it would be just to pay for the portion that Medicare doesn’t cover. And of course we all pay an exorbitant cost through our taxes.
When the government pays and subsidizes health care, and health insurance, it automatically raises the prices. Doctors and hospitals charge higher prices knowing that the insurance company or the government will pay for it. They don’t have to worry about price competition. We need to completely remove the government from our medical lives and prices will go way down through competition.
There are also too many rules and regulations that need to be repealed. Licensing laws are ridiculous that only serve to protect doctors from competition. There is no reason that you shouldn’t be able to see a nurse when you have a cold. You shouldn’t need to get a prescription and spend (or have your insurance company spend) hundreds of dollars just to see a doctor for five minutes. There is no reason that we can’t consult a pharmacist and get the drugs we need. We are adults and we should be responsible for our own decisions. And of course in a free market we would have a lot of consumer reports, and licensing companies, that would help direct us.
We should get the government completely out of the medical business. We should be free as individuals to make our own choices with the help of our doctors. Prices will drop rapidly and the quality of our care will improve. For the few that still can’t afford it charity hospitals and doctors will easily fill the void.