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Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

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  • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

    Always lost in the conversation is the impact health care has on our industries trying to compete in a global market.

    2007 Lee Iacocca

    Health care: an issue that cries out for leadership.



    "Health care in this country is in shambles. At a cost of almost $12,000 a year for the average family, the system is bankrupting families and it's bankrupting companies - specifically my old industry. Take General Motors. They're currently paying out $1,525 per vehicle for health care. Compare that to the $201 Toyota is paying and it sounds even more absurd. And what about those families and individuals who can't afford insurance at all? Junior breaks his arm and all of a sudden, a fall off a bike is an $8,000 trip to the ER.

    Despite all of this, none of our politicians will touch the issue. Oh sure, they'll talk about it during campaign season, but once the votes are cast, it's the forgotten issue again. The last time anyone proposed real reform was in 1993, and that plan went nowhere. Fourteen years later, Hillary Clinton's failed plan is still used as an excuse to continue ignoring the problem. That's disgraceful.

    I suggest you listen carefully to the '08 candidates' "plans" for health care. Let's see if any of them have the political courage to really tackle it this time around. I don't want band-aid ideas either. I want concrete solutions - and I want to hold these guys to their promises."


    "Howard Schultz, the chairman of Starbucks, says his company spends more on health insurance than it spends on coffee beans! What do you think would happen if all those people were suddenly uninsured? That is a question a responsible government needs to address"

    מה מכילות החדשות?


    • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

      Originally posted by adaher View Post
      You will not see those savings in a government-run system. Whatever the government saves on administrative costs will be offset by increased fraud.
      And that is a valid point.

      מה מכילות החדשות?


      • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

        Originally posted by Blue Doggy View Post
        And that is a valid point.
        America's new motto...We CAN'T!!!

        If you can be well without health, you may be happy without virtue.
        Edmund Burke

        מה מכילות החדשות?


        • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

          Originally posted by Mushroom View Post
          And your claim it is not fair is rubbish. I pay a set amount for my housing, and my food and my car. But others pay more or less for these same items, depending on how much they want to and are able to pay for it..
          Ah, but you said the magic word, WANT. You have a choice to pay more or less for your housing, food, car, and if you arent able, you dont get it. This is fair because everyone is held to the same standard. The price is set according to negotiation between willing parties. Youre suggestion is that Bill Gates pay more thean John Smith for the same house, the same food, the same car as decided by a third party (which I assume only John Smith would agree with). How is that fair to Bill Gates?
          Last edited by jviehe; 01-13-2012, 07:45 AM.

          מה מכילות החדשות?


          • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

            Originally posted by TomBlaze View Post
            What else is there? How do I get my career back since it has been shipped overseas and how do I make enough money to pay the tens of thousands of dollars or even hundreds of thousands of dollars it takes to deal with my new "gift"? I am thirty fucking nine years old and have a stress related heart condition, no job, exhausted savings and barely making ends meet on paltry unemployment combined with intermittent work in fields like landscaping, construction and fucking dog sitting. I used to make nearly 80k per year as a creative professional and paid my own way never asking for anything. Now I am fucking poor...literally. I was just getting back on my feet after a series of unfortunate events in my life and the wind hath been sucked form my sails.

            I am sorry but it seems you are advocating handing power over to corporations. I would rather have a "bigger" government that protects me from this bullshit than a corporate model that tells to to just die if I cannot afford to pay for my own healthcare.

            The real joke is on you because universal healthcare is active now in the form of charity care. I have to wait as long a 7 hours at the hospital because that many people are using it right now and all that cost comes right out of the taxpayer's pocket.

            UHC will merge medicare and medicaid and eliminate health insurance companies which will streamline the process, bring costs down because profit would not factor in. Most people would pay far less in taxes per year than they would in medical expenses each year. They would not have to go bankrupt when a family member comes down with cancer like my stepfather did when my mother died of cancer in 1992 and like my brother-in-law did when my sister died in 2010. They would not face financial turmoil in the event of a serious accident. Americans would actually go to the doctor more for things like preventative care which also limits costs long-term.

            I am also open to making people pay medical surcharges for things like drug addiction and obesity or any other condition resulting form people taking poor care of themselves to offset their costs but a univesalr heallthcare system makes sense. It takes the profit out of the equation. It would also mean that the goverbemtn would have to take over ALL medical research....none of that should be subject to patent law. If a cure for cancer is discovered....all Americans should have access just for being a citizen and paying taxes without having to take extra money out of pocket.

            But I digress, if people insist on not having UHC, I will be content to get continued free healthcare on their dime via charity care, because I want to live and I will do whatever I have to withing my means. You cannot deny me my survival.
            70% of all bankruptcy cases are as a result of medical expenses. Over half of those are people who had some sort of health insurance! The system is wholly inefficient, and does nothing for health care. What we have in this country is sick care, and it's orders of magnitudes more expensive.

            מה מכילות החדשות?


            • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

              Originally posted by MeadHallPirate
              ahoy adaher,

              if ye could do me the courtesy, please link the comparative studies. i'd kinda favor a single payor system, which also had leeway fer them to afford more, to have more. kinda like our schools here in America. everyone has public schools, but if ye have the monies, ye can go to a better private school...the thing is, everyone has access to some kinda school.

              i've an open mind, matey, and i likes to learn new things and gain perspective - lets see them studies.

              - MeadHallPirate
              They have such a system in France (it's essentially single-payer for everyone, but if you want to add private insurance, you are free to do so). As a result, they have the best health care system in the world, according to the World Health Organization.

              מה מכילות החדשות?


              • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

                Originally posted by Bfgrn View Post
                Maybe you missed this part:

                "if the single payer financing of Medicare were applied to citizens of all ages, we would save $350 billion annually, more than enough to provide comprehensive health care to every American."
                Then just pass the law and leave the budget as it is. As long as Medicare was capped at current spending and only allowed to grow at the SGR rate, I'd be happy with that.

                מה מכילות החדשות?


                • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

                  Originally posted by adaher View Post
                  That's fine, you mean something like what France has: basic medical care is provided under a single-payer system, but it's recognized that the government safety net is a floor. Most citizens get supplemental health insurance.




                  Not studies, stats. Well, you're familiar with the ones on cost, since you know single-payer is cheapest and ours is the most expensive.

                  Cancer survival rates, according to the Lancet:

                  Health care: You get what you pay for | The Economist

                  And in wait times, Canada and the UK tend to do pretty poorly, while Germany is the gold standard. Germany, incidentally, is not single-payer. The US record on wait times is mixed. We seem to have a shortage of primary care physicians, but we do well with specialists, diagnostic tests, and surgeries.

                  Wait Times For Medical Care: How The US Actually Measures Up - Better Health



                  - MeadHallPirate
                  [/QUOTE]

                  Cancer survivor rates are a bit skewed because the older you get, the higher your chances of getting cancer. Our survivor rate is due to our "single-payer" system known as Medicare. Your point only serves to strengthen our need for an expansion to Medicare-For-All.

                  מה מכילות החדשות?


                  • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

                    Medicare is open-ended though, whereas other single payer systems are on a budget. That's why i say, go ahead and peg Medicare to the NHS.

                    מה מכילות החדשות?


                    • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

                      I posted this back in 2009, but I think it's quite relevant in this thread:

                      Health Insurance Insider: 'They Dump the Sick' (and other facts and figures)

                      My commentary: The insurance company's interest is to the bottom line. People complain about not having a choice of a doctor under a Public Option or Single-Payer plan, well, that point is moot if you can't see a doctor at all because your profit-driven insurance company won't pay your bill. You lose your job, you lose your coverage. You keep your job, you still have to go to a doctor that is "in-network" ... some choice. Under a Single-Payer plan, you will have a choice of doctors to choose from, you never lose your coverage if you lose your job, you save money by not having to purchase premiums and pay co-pays. Those people will have "disposable" income to spend and help stimulate the economy. Businesses save money by not having to provide health insurance to their employees and are able to be competitive with foreign companies.

                      The majority of Americans want either a Public Option or Single-Payer Plan (to me, Single-Payer would be the most efficient, and least expensive while providing the most comprehensive coverage with government bargaining power). [For Single-Payer, the percentage is 59% vs. 32%; for either plan that majority jumps to 76%]

                      Over 62% of all bankruptcies are due to medical bills. Of those, 78% of those bankrupted had medical insurance!

                      Health Insurance Insider: 'They Dump the Sick'
                      Retired Health Insurance Executive Blows the Whistle on His Former Industry

                      Excerpt from link:
                      A year-long investigation by a subcommittee of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce found that three major U.S. insurance companies, WellPoint Inc., Assurant Health and United HealthGroup, canceled nearly 19,800 customer policies between 2003 and 2007.

                      Public health plan could save money faster: policy group

                      Excerpt from link:
                      A nationwide health insurance exchange that includes a Medicare-like government option could save $1.8 trillion more than if only private plans are offered, a prominent private U.S. health policy group said on Wednesday.

                      [snip]

                      In comparison, an exchange including a government plan with higher rates would save $1.97 trillion and a private plan-only exchange would save almost $1.2 trillion. Both options would save a household $1,600.

                      Another Poll Shows Majority Support for Single-Payer

                      Excerpt from link:
                      A New York Times/CBS News poll released last week shows, yet again, that the majority of Americans support national health insurance.

                      The poll, which compares answers to the same questions from 30 years ago, finds that, “59% [of Americans] say the government should provide national health insurance, including 49% who say such insurance should cover all medical problems.”

                      Only 32% think that insurance should be left to private enterprise.

                      Medical bills prompt more than 60 percent of U.S. bankruptcies

                      Excerpt from link:
                      They concluded that 62.1 percent of the bankruptcies were medically related because the individuals either had more than $5,000 (or 10 percent of their pretax income) in medical bills, mortgaged their home to pay for medical bills, or lost significant income due to an illness. On average, medically bankrupt families had $17,943 in out-of-pocket expenses, including $26,971 for those who lacked insurance and $17,749 who had insurance at some point.

                      Overall, three-quarters of the people with a medically-related bankruptcy had health insurance, they say.

                      Any civilized nation that cares about its people while saving costs on preventative healthcare should consider this a no-brainer.

                      As always, you can avail yourself of the knowledge through Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP).

                      Single-Payer FAQ

                      מה מכילות החדשות?


                      • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

                        Originally posted by Rude Boy View Post
                        I posted this back in 2009, but I think it's quite relevant in this thread:

                        Health Insurance Insider: 'They Dump the Sick' (and other facts and figures)

                        My commentary: The insurance company's interest is to the bottom line. People complain about not having a choice of a doctor under a Public Option or Single-Payer plan, well, that point is moot if you can't see a doctor at all because your profit-driven insurance company won't pay your bill. You lose your job, you lose your coverage. You keep your job, you still have to go to a doctor that is "in-network" ... some choice. Under a Single-Payer plan, you will have a choice of doctors to choose from, you never lose your coverage if you lose your job, you save money by not having to purchase premiums and pay co-pays. Those people will have "disposable" income to spend and help stimulate the economy. Businesses save money by not having to provide health insurance to their employees and are able to be competitive with foreign companies.

                        The majority of Americans want either a Public Option or Single-Payer Plan (to me, Single-Payer would be the most efficient, and least expensive while providing the most comprehensive coverage with government bargaining power). [For Single-Payer, the percentage is 59% vs. 32%; for either plan that majority jumps to 76%]

                        Over 62% of all bankruptcies are due to medical bills. Of those, 78% of those bankrupted had medical insurance!

                        Health Insurance Insider: 'They Dump the Sick'
                        Retired Health Insurance Executive Blows the Whistle on His Former Industry

                        Excerpt from link:
                        A year-long investigation by a subcommittee of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce found that three major U.S. insurance companies, WellPoint Inc., Assurant Health and United HealthGroup, canceled nearly 19,800 customer policies between 2003 and 2007.

                        Public health plan could save money faster: policy group

                        Excerpt from link:
                        A nationwide health insurance exchange that includes a Medicare-like government option could save $1.8 trillion more than if only private plans are offered, a prominent private U.S. health policy group said on Wednesday.

                        [snip]

                        In comparison, an exchange including a government plan with higher rates would save $1.97 trillion and a private plan-only exchange would save almost $1.2 trillion. Both options would save a household $1,600.

                        Another Poll Shows Majority Support for Single-Payer

                        Excerpt from link:
                        A New York Times/CBS News poll released last week shows, yet again, that the majority of Americans support national health insurance.

                        The poll, which compares answers to the same questions from 30 years ago, finds that, “59% [of Americans] say the government should provide national health insurance, including 49% who say such insurance should cover all medical problems.”

                        Only 32% think that insurance should be left to private enterprise.

                        Medical bills prompt more than 60 percent of U.S. bankruptcies

                        Excerpt from link:
                        They concluded that 62.1 percent of the bankruptcies were medically related because the individuals either had more than $5,000 (or 10 percent of their pretax income) in medical bills, mortgaged their home to pay for medical bills, or lost significant income due to an illness. On average, medically bankrupt families had $17,943 in out-of-pocket expenses, including $26,971 for those who lacked insurance and $17,749 who had insurance at some point.

                        Overall, three-quarters of the people with a medically-related bankruptcy had health insurance, they say.

                        Any civilized nation that cares about its people while saving costs on preventative healthcare should consider this a no-brainer.

                        As always, you can avail yourself of the knowledge through Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP).

                        Single-Payer FAQ
                        EXCELLENT post RB!

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                        • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

                          Originally posted by Bfgrn View Post
                          It not new, it has been done for 47 years extremely successfully.
                          No it hasn't. It hasn't been free. It's untrue to claim it has been. My grandparents have been paying more for healthcare beyond that received by medicare-A for years, it clearly doesn't meet all the health care demands of everyone extremely successfully at the same relative cost.

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                          • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

                            Originally posted by Rude Boy View Post
                            Over 62% of all bankruptcies are due to medical bills. Of those, 78% of those bankrupted had medical insurance!
                            untrue. The conclusion of Steffie Woodlander was that "62.1 percent of the bankruptcies were medically related because the individuals either have more than $5,000 (or 10 percent of their pretax income) in medical bills, mortgaged their home to their home to pay for medical bills, or lost significant income due to an illness."

                            It doesn't hold that 62% of bankruptcies are due to medical bills.

                            Another study in 2007 showed only 2.4% of families had any medical debt and that while bankruptcies had increase by 25% over the studied decade there has been no significant change in share of overall debt due to medical bills.

                            Testimony on "The Medical Bankruptcy Fairness Act" - Health - AEI

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                            • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

                              Originally posted by Korimir View Post
                              Yes, we should have a universal health care system. There's no such thing as a free lunch, but sometimes it's better and less expensive for one entity to buy lunch for 300 million people than for 300 million people to buy their own lunch.

                              I'm with Tim, though, in saying that we would need strict medical malpractice tort reform as a package deal, if this program isn't to bankrupt the treasury.
                              There's actually data, and it shows that tort reform does nothing to lower costs.
                              What actually raises costs the most, is doctor owned hospitals, laboratories and imaging clinics.
                              What lowers costs is doctors on salary.

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                              • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

                                Originally posted by Bfgrn View Post
                                EXCELLENT post RB!
                                Thanks! I thought I'd get some more information to pad what you had provided up thread.

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