Monday, July 13, 2009

Health Care Reform - why so expansive?

Can someone tell us why Congress is making this issue so expensive and complicated?

Look at how the cost has come down and the quality has gone up on vision correction surgery, with no federal or state intervention
Only basic regulations are in place, and tort laws were not reformed
think about that example, while you read this

Part of the problem is that Congress wants to take 500 - 1500 pages to establish some simple, 1 to 2 page issues.
They seem to like 1500 pages, because they can then slide other things into a bill, and leave parts unwritten, like with Cap and Trade

what would change the whole system in a gradual manner, and not add tons more debt would be the following:

- eliminate the pre-existing clause for health issues, like has been done in multiple states already
now people can get coverage - no matter what the issue

- allow reduced premiums for healthy lifestyles, so smoking and unhealthy lifestyles only penalize the ones who have them, such as the industry already does
If you want to be a chain smoker, and gain 300 lbs - go for it - the only one you hurt is you

- mandate coverage on all citizens, using a basic catastrophic plan as a minimum, such as the existing HSA approved plan structure, which are high deductible and no cap plans
now no one goes bankrupt because they have no coverage, or capped coverage

- phase out employer health plans, since the overall cost per person is higher than individual plans, and layoffs and terminations cause so many to loose coverage going from employer to individual coverage
Now no one looses insurance because of job issues - it's your coverage, so you pay for it
mandate Disability riders in the policy if need be - so a permanently injured person has coverage for the 36 months it takes to go on SSI
Employers are free to compete on the global economy, employees do not have salary caps that automatically factor in health care costs - even when they decline coverage

- make transference of cost illegal, so that private plans are not forced to pay the non-reimbursed costs that Medicare and Medicate do not cover: I should not have to pay for the federal government's refusal to pay.
If Medicare and Medicaid's payment schedule is not enough, providers can choose not to participate, which is the free market system

- set up a fail safe program, that allows people to move to Medicare and Medicaid when legitimate changes in income happen.

- keep the existing COBRA rules in place until the laws take effect

- Keep SCHIP in place to cover lower income children,

- keep means testing, so only people with a real need qualify for assistance

those simple changes will eliminate all but about 16 million uninsured,
those 16 million are here without legal documentation, and that is a different issue to resolve first

net cost to the tax payer - almost nothing

the states can continue to manage plans and benefits, but some federal intervention will be needed to keep things like hair transplants and fertility treatments for 60 year olds of of the mandated coverage list, so that costs stay in line

If you think this is crazy - and it can't be this simple

remember what happened when it really is a free market - like vision correction surgery, like cosmetic surgery, with no federal or state intervention

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