Monday, August 10, 2009

A good question about health care reform.

Michael Kinsley asked a good question in his column in last Friday's Washington Post. His question is how can health insurance be considered "private" if the government dictates all of the terms under which an insurer can provide medical coverage:

If the government requires insurers to accept all customers and charge all the same price, regulates all aspects of their marketing to make sure they aren't discriminating, and then redistributes the profits to make sure that no company gets penalized unfairly, in what sense is the industry still "private"? And as long as the forces inherent in medicine -- such as your natural reluctance to haggle over price with the doctor who will be conducting your brain surgery tomorrow -- haven't disappeared, in what way will health care resemble a "free market"?

But thank goodness we won't have socialized medicine.

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