My Comments: My experience with our health care system comes from two sources. The first one is my 43 years as a licensed insurance agent. I saw health insurance premiums increase roughly 10% every year.
The health insurance premium increases were largely a result of ever increasing costs, driven by the hospital industry, the pharmaceutical industry, the legal profession, and, of course, the insurance industry. The net effect of all that was to create an unsustainable cost matrix that if left alone would bankrupt the country.
The second one comes from being covered by Medicare and a medigap plan for the past 12 years. I pay into both, on the order of $300 per month, so I take full advantage of medical providers to help keep me alive. I also see what they charge for my care and it’s mind boggling.
I welcomed the Affordable Care Act as it was intended to provide an umbrella over the various stakeholders such that the annual increases in cost would hopefully be controlled. It hasn’t worked out that way mostly because too many states elected not to participate, and our glorious members of Congress are bought and paid for by one or more of the four ‘industries’ listed above. The other stakeholders are the medical profession and you and I as consumers.
To me, it’s pathetic that one of the richest countries in the world has among the worst health care outcomes for its citizenry, while at the same time costing citizens a larger slice of take home pay than most other industrialized countries. But that’s America.
Sooner or later this problem will have to be solved. I’m increasingly persuaded that universal health care is necessary. You can call is socialism if you want to but the fact remains, you and I have a stake in the health care outcomes in this country and what we are doing now is not longer working.
by Sam Baker \ January 15, 2019
Most Americans think the U.S. health care system is pretty bad — but which Americans hold that view seems to depend on who’s in the White House.
By the numbers: 70% of Americans say the health care system has serious problems or is in a “state of crisis,” according to a new Gallup poll, while just 30% say it’s not so bad.
- Those numbers have roughly held steady since 2001.
- But there are big partisan shifts over that period. During the George W. Bush administration, more Democrats said the system was in crisis. Under Barack Obama, Republicans were the ones panicking.
- Now, they’ve switched again — Republicans’ dissatisfaction is waning and Democrats’ is growing.
Reality check: The U.S. has had worse health outcomes than other industrialized countries, and has paid more for those outcomes, this whole time.