How is Obama's 1.7 trillion dollar health care program going to save Americans money?
Almost two trillion dollars? For what?
The American health care system is financially controlled to limit cures but to encourage a dependence on ongoing funded care.
If government programs will pay for a fat guy to take a pill - that pill becomes more expensive.
If erectile dysfunction is funded - Viagra has a market.
If people are nervous - there is a laundry list of pills that will enable them to cope.
If a man (or woman) is going bald - insurance will cover that too.
Boobs too small - many insurance companies will cover that too.
We are a country looking for the quick fix.
(Or the illusion of such a fix, to be more precise.)
What ever happened to a proper diet and exercise?
A better diet and exercise would eliminate many of the costs insurance companies pay to pharmaceutical companies in the billions of dollars annually.
A lack of vanity would eliminate even more wasted money.
"Illnesses" of lifestyle should not be covered.
The big pharma/big insurance complex generates about two trillion dollars in revenue annually.
For example - the ingredients required to make one hundred tablets of the popular drug Lipitor cost about $5.80.
The hospitals charges the consumer (through insurance companies or other) $275.37 for that same bottle.
A markup of 4696%.
The cost of this markup is passed along to whomever is paying for the coverage.
We are paying a premium for coverage that most of us don't really need.
The UCI Medical Center in Irvine California cost about $325 million to build.
The hospital generates about $180 million in annual revenue.
For TWO TRILLION DOLLARS - we could build more than 3000 similar hospitals nationwide.
These Basicare hospitals would only cover true illness.
If you smoke - illnesses cause by your smoking will NOT be covered.
If you have a poor diet - illnesses caused by your poor diet will NOT be covered.
If you have sex without a condom - penicillin will NOT be covered.
No "illness" due to lifestyle will be covered. (That would have to come out of your own pocket.)
These Basicare hospitals would deny the vanity inspired boob job, lypo-suction or male pattern baldness treatments.
This group of hospitals would only cover the basics.
These hospitals would use generic medications and promote healing.
This would keep costs low but ensure basic coverage at premium facilities for all.
If one would like more coverage they could buy the Basicare+ option.
But the burden of this more extensive coverage would rest upon the individual.
Today's system is like telling everyone that their right to own a car should translate into their entitlement to own a Bentley (And us buying that Bentley for those who cannot afford one.).
Any coverage beyond one's basic needs should become the burden of the purchaser.
After the system is in place, the hospital group could be put on the market for purchase by any company who has fewer than one thousand employees.
Each employee would be able to purchase shares from their 401k-type payroll contributions.
But this stock should not be allowed to be blended in any way into a mixed portfolio.
Forget the tons of wasted paperwork - a web site and annual televised stockholders meeting would eliminate the wasting of time, money, paper and resources.
(Really, how thoroughly do you read your yearly prospectus?)
These shares should not be permitted to be speculated upon.
This could be done in much the same way as Kaiser Steel transformed itself into Kaiser Permanente.
This way, all Americans would have an opportunity to become shareholders in their own futures.
(Kind-of like a credit union type of economy.)
Will this rough idea work?
I don't know.
But it makes more sense than trying to prop up the already flawed current system.
It makes more sense than Obama's plan of subsidising the already all to powerful insurance/pharmaceutical industrial complex.