Originally Posted by Norman Alexander
This depends on how the system is implemented, but I suspect that doctors 'adding fees' (in order to cover expenses like malpractice insurance, or anything else) would be considered illegal. That's the way Canada does it... everything (at least in terms of basic medical coverage, not including dental/eye care) is covered by the government program.
Buy it is still a cost that impacts health care. That was the point of my earlier post: That there are costs that will not be impacted by a switch to single payer unless other changes are made.
Yet you still made that argument, without clarifying what that impact would be.
No, nor is that necessary. A happy medium that allows treatment or diagnostics within a few days is superior to a months/years long waiting list.
I never claimed that waiting lists were due to negligence or lack of empathy.
But, here in Canada it is due to a combination of slow government response and a need to fulfill multiple priorities that also include non-medical needs (such as basic infrastructure, defense, policing). Plus, the priority of the patient may not necessarily line up with the priority of the officials making the health care decisions.
Again, the issue is if people push for single payer because "gee wiz, its cheaper" then they will have to justify how people may have their health care treatments delayed.
Yes, 2 examples. I gave those specifically to personalize the type of situations find themselves under, so that hopefully people recognize that "Waiting lists? No big deal" is a foolish argument.
I have no doubt that many people were.
But here's the thing: keep in mind that many (probably most) people DO have health insurance of some kind. And those people can often get better treatment (read: faster service, better tools) than people in places like Canada.
Now, the problem when people discuss health care is that not everyone agrees on the same terms. To many, "Single payer" simply means "universal". To others, Single payer is a lot more focused: it means no private insurance at all; everything is covered by the government program. (This appears to be what Sander's plan is. I'd have to look at Warren's plan in more detail to see if it is the same.)
I think the U.S. system needs to be reformed. But I think going to a true 'single user' system is a mistake. The best health care systems are the ones that merge private and public systems.
If you tell people who do have coverage "Your own health care and that of your family will get worse, so that some unnamed person might be better off", you might have a hard time getting broad public support.
But when it does happen, the patient has no options. (Well, unless they're rich enough to become a medical tourist).
Yes, I know its covered now. That's why I said "There was a point"
where treatment was not provided in Ontario. It was an accepted treatment in the United States, but the government here said "Nope".
The fact that the government finally adopted it doesn't change the fact that there was a time period when it didn't cover the treatments.
Again we have to deal with what exactly 'single payer' means. Universal coverage but with private options for better service? A public option to cover those that private health care missed? True single payer with no private options at all?
The only western country that has adopted a 'no private insurance' scheme (like the one pushed by Sanders) is Canada, and we generally rank near the bottom of various health care rankings. The better options mix private and public in various ways, and usually end up better off for it.
When it comes to basic health care (i.e. not including drugs, vision, dental) Canada comes closest to a "true" single payer. And our system falls behind other countries.
Strangely enough, I have no problem getting fast treatment for vision or dental. But then those are paid for by private insurance. What are the odds?
Well, that is the line that Sanders seems to be pushing.
Under the Sanders proposal, private health insurance companies would be eliminated. Every resident would be covered by a single government insurance program that would pay the entire cost of almost every health care service and product...
Its a plan that goes beyond even what Canada offers.
And then there is Warren's plan:
Private insurance would be eliminated. Warren argues that would save hundreds of billions of dollars in administrative spending, and relieve patients of the hassle of dealing with their insurer.
- Americans would no longer have to worry about reaching their deductibles or whether their doctors are in their insurance network.
- They'd pay no premiums and have "virtually no" out-of-pocket costs, according to Warren. They'd have expansive health benefits, including long-term care, audio, visual, and dental.
- They'd also have no choice about any of this.
The first 2 points may sound great. The last point may cause some problems.