Health Care in 2011 – Regulate it as a Utility


Health care should be regulated as if it were a public utility.

For some I know that this will be a stretch, but health care access is a public need.

No, the Emergency Room (ER) does not represent acceptable health care access — and using the ER degrades the quality of care that folks receive and only treats the symptoms of those that cannot afford a regular doctor.

Life isn’t fair. Until it becomes so then our society, or any civilized society with any compassion for the less well off or aged without resources, will eventually demand better care and some uniformity in the delivery and cost of medical services.

I have health coverage, very good health coverage. I also know those that do not. They are not lazy, unproductive citizens — none are looking to get by on the public dime. of course, neither do they have many dimes, or dollars.

I am not advocating for free or socialized medicine and medical care. I am saying that no American citizen should ever have to worry about trading off healthcare for food, to pay their electric bill or to give up their home. Means testing is fine with me. Means-tested copays are too.

Whether it is ObamaCare or RyanCare — please look all Americans in the eye and tell us that if we need medical care that it will be available if we cannot afford or some insurer refuses to provide coverage or both.

Taking care of our fellow Americans when in need is neither left nor right, liberal nor conservative. It is just the American thing to do.

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3 Comments

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3 responses to “Health Care in 2011 – Regulate it as a Utility

  1. Just one itty,bitty question here, how do you suggest we pay for this? And how do you feel about the other zillion entitlements?

    • We already pay approximately $34 billion per year for ER services for folks without medical insurance. Add in Medicare and Medicaid costs and it all adds up to a lot of money.

      Most Americans believe that we have a responsibility to help the least among us. By having a largely open system where people can game the system we open it up to abuse.

      If we regulated health care along the lines of public utilities (essential services), people could choose to participate or not. We could probably stop much of the abuse — and abuse includes that by doctors and hospitals and insurance companies — if we required audited billing, billing ONLY for cost of procedure + profit markup; and a requirement that those that can pay will pay.

      • We also need to make health insurance a personal purchase for all Americans and not make it dependent upon employment with select employers. Employer-provided health coverage is a major tax free advantage that significantly lowers the cost of health care to the individual getting it — so when they encounter someone without coverage that whines about costs, etc., they really have little empathy … because they are clueless about the real costs themselves since their health care is always there and always relatively affordable.

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