There is no sense in setting ourselves up for failure by creating a nationalized healthcare system. The United States already provides healthcare that is regarded as being among the best in the world, making it irrational to model a new system after programs that are substandard to our own.
It’s no secret that the U.S. government has trouble establishing and sticking to budgets. The U.S is currently almost $12 trillion in debt, according to www.usdebtclock.org, and federal healthcare would only increase that number.
President Barack Obama claims that his healthcare plan would not contribute to the U.S. national debt. But statistics of his report show that reforming healthcare would cost close to $100 billion per year for the first 10 years, almost as much as the yearly funding for the Iraq war.
Sure, it is going to seem great when everyone in the U.S. has healthcare, but what happens when a patient actually needs a major operation or even a simple check-up?
Every year, those in charge of federally run healthcare systems set a strict budget for what they will provide to citizens. Once the budget runs out for a certain field, they can no longer provide aid in that area for patients. This means wait lists stretching out months and even years in some cases for operations and procedures that currently take days within the U.S.
According to an article published in The Los Angeles Times, 27 percent of Canadians and 38 percent of the British have reported waiting four months or more on elective surgeries (simple surgeries that are made by the choice of the patient).
In the U.S., only 5 percent of patients have made this claim. Let’s keep it that way.
The main issue that the healthcare system faces today is that it is too expensive for the 45.8 million Americans who cannot afford health insurance, according to The New York Times. The solution, however, does not reside in the government but in the insurance companies themselves.
The simple non-federal debt accumulating way to lowering the price of a product or service is to make a more competitive market. At the moment, many insurance companies are merging together to extend coverage, which in return leaves people with less option to choose from and higher prices.
Extending insurance plans across state lines would be a start to lowering prices. At the moment, insurance companies provide different plan options for different states; by extending plans across state line, healthcare would expand from a state market to a national market.
The Wall Street Journal published an article at the end of 2008 comparing the price of healthcare plans between states. The annual price for a healthy male at the age of 25 for a plan in New Jersey was $5,880. The cost of the same plan in Kentucky was $1,000. If these two states, as well as others, were able to compete for customers nationally, then the average price of insurance would drop considerably.
As the tale of Jack and the Beanstalk taught us, never trade the cow for the magic beans. Our healthcare system doesn’t need to be nationalized; we need to expand upon the current system. There is no reason to trade the system that we currently have for one that we “hope” will work.