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Solution to the Healthcare Crisis

Updated on July 31, 2017
jackclee lm profile image

Jack is currently a volunteer at the Westchester County Archives. Jack has worked at IBM for over 28 years.

Introduction

With the latest failed attempt by the GOP Senate to repeal Obamacare, I think it is clear to all rational people that it is time to give up. Stop the show and grand standing. Stop the rhetoric and hyperbole. Stop the name calling and blame game. Just fix it.

- July 2017

Background

The history of ACA is well known. It was pushed through by the Democratic majority under President Obama in 2010 without a single Republican vote. It was a monstrosity of a bill over 2000 incomprehensible pages. No one read it. It had many components that were to phase in over 10 years.

After the failed launch of the health exchange website and the numerous growing pains, it is clear that this bill was a heavy load on our economy and our government resources. Now, we have a system that is heavily subsidized and yet it is no better and arguably worse for most American. The deductibles have gone up while premiums have skyrocked in some states. The choices are few and many exchanges have gone under.

When the individual mandates goes into full operation this year, more people will be forced to buy in or pay a penalty to opt out. This is not a good solution.

The key problem with our healthcare system is that it cannot do both that it was mandated to do. That is be a free market competition insurance and a compassionate system to take care of all pre-existing conditions and all who cannot afford to buy their own insurance. These two ideas are contradictory.

Since the American people more or less have decided they want some form of subsidized health insurance to cover everyone, I think the prudent solution is to adopt a single payer system. As much as I dislike big government intrusion, it is inevitable and we are at a crossroad. It has been forced upon us by the last administration. We have little choice but to deal with it now.

The course of actions since 2010 have lead us here. The ACA was designed to fail in 10 years. We are 7 years into that timeline. If it had been stopped in the first 2 years or so, we may be able to recover. Many of the policies and infrastructure are in place and entrenched into our healthcare delivery system. These changes cannot be unraveled without major disruption and pain. We are stuck with this like it or not.

The Democrats have succeeded in implementing one more entitlement into our lives. It started with the New Deal of FDR with Social Security and later with the war on povety under President Johnson. Now we are looking at universal health care.

Solution Proposal

My idea of a possible solution is this. If we are to adopt a single payer system for healthcare, lets find the best plan from around the world. Then we should copy it and do the same here. If it worked well in another country, we at least have a chance to make it work here. We are often told about how great the Canadian system or the UK system are. Yet, when we dig into it, we find they have many issues with long waiting times and restricted care based on age and cost...

As it turned out, the best system can be found in Taiwan. They have instituted a single payer system for 30 years. The people are happy. It is low cost. Quality of care is very high. It is universal. What is their secret, and how can we replicate it here?

Summary

It is long past debate. The question of which health insurace to adopt is over. The American people cannot wait any longer. The politics is making us sick. We are fighting the wrong problem. We need a Congress that will legislate instead of obstruct. They need to work together and come up with a viable solution. We need to recognize that we are a divided nation. In this one area, we have to agree on a solution for all americans. It may not be perfect but it needs to be sustainable. That means, no more smoke and mirrors and CBO phony numbers and estimates. The economics of this new system has to work out. The total cost has to be paid by all and in a fair manor. One of the failure of ACA was that it was front loaded with taxes and backloaded with expenses that were unsustainable. That was why it was designed to fail. We need something that is economically viable from day one till infinity. Pay as you go is the only way forward.

Postscript

It must be pointed out who created this mess and who is tasked with fixing it. The Democrats, under Obama's leadership and his advisors, Jonathan Gruber and Ezikiel Emanuel, and the insurance lobbies created this ACA which will be memorialized as Obamacare. It should also be pointed out that they lied to the American people to get it passed. "You can keep your Dr. If you like your Dr." They knew full well that it was unsustainable. They also knew that once an entitlement is given, it cannot be taken back.

Who is to fix this mess? It was left up to the GOP controlled Congress and President Trump. I believe they want to do the right thing. Unfortunately for them, and for the American people, the right thing is not on the table. We are left with a single payer system as the only viable option.

A message to Congress: Don't forget who you work for. Listen to your constituents, listen to the Doctors and health professionals, listen to your conscience.

© 2017 Jack Lee

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    • jackclee lm profile image
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      Jack Lee 3 months ago from Yorktown NY

      I can only say, it is what it is...why does anyone does anything? Obama's motive are clear because he said it in so many words. He was amored with the single payer plan. He realized he couldn't get it under the political climate at the time. He went with a bridge in the form of ACA. Why is that so hard for you to understand? You are a smart person. You need to think outside the box. The ACA could not be sustainable because it added million to the insurance role who couldn't afford it. That money came from subsidies which were temporary. The federal government gave States some assistance in the earlier years to help with the expanded Medicaid. It is due to go away in a few years. Guess what, most states don't have the funds to continue...that is why ACA will fail...

    • peoplepower73 profile image

      Mike Russo 3 months ago from Placentia California

      Jack: You are going to have to learn to check who the author is of the articles you cite. The contributor to the Hill in this case is a doctor from Newport Beach CA, This is what I just copied from that site.

      "Dr. Barke practices family medicine in Newport Beach, California. The views of Contributors are their own and are not the views of The Hill."

      I can't put credence in an opinion from a family doctor from Newport Beach. You should validate your sources before you quote them as gospel. Even the title of the article says "What if" : "A doctor asks: Was ObamaCare designed to fail?"... That's why it didn't make any sense to me that Obama would do that...Sorry Jack.

    • jackclee lm profile image
      Author

      Jack Lee 3 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Mike,

      Here is one article on this -

      http://thehill.com/blogs/pundits-blog/healthcare/2...

      There are others out there if you care to search.

      The bill was never meant to stay. It was a stop gap until we get single payer.

    • peoplepower73 profile image

      Mike Russo 3 months ago from Placentia California

      Jack: It will only make sense to me if you can show me the source where you got the information for the 10 year phase out. Why would Obama have such a plan when the GOP tried 57 times during his administration to kill ACA? Why wouldn't he just let them kill it? We are now into 7.5 years of the phase out. When does the phase out start?

      Many of the republican governors who were supposed to participate in the state exchanges decided to opt out of the program. This places a burden on the federal government and the governors intentions are to kill the ACA. That was all part of the Mitch McConnell plan and Paul Ryan plan.

    • jackclee lm profile image
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      Jack Lee 3 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Mike, it is very simple and I will explain it to you. Poll after poll shows americans don't want a single payer system. Obama when he got elected knew this to be the case. He knew he has the votes to change the law to whatever he wanted, even by a small majority in Congress. However, if he did it then, it would be very unpopular and he would be voted out in 2012. So, he decided to implement a bridge bill which was designed to phase in after 7 years. After 10 years, many of the subsidies will go away and the States will be stuck with the entitlements. He figures, by then, he would be out of office and whoever is in power will have to jump in to save the system and create a single payer as he and most democrats wanted in the first place. Does it make sense to you now?

    • peoplepower73 profile image

      Mike Russo 3 months ago from Placentia California

      Jack: Why would he design it to fail? Why wouldn't the people support it? I didn't get to vote on it did you? I never participated in a survey or a poll, did you? That doesn't make sense. It has been 7.5 years and it hasn't failed yet. That is nothing more than GOP rhetoric.

      There are parts that need to be fixed, but it hasn't failed. Instead of the GOP calling it Obama Care which is a pejorative term, if they work on it to fix the bad parts, they should call it the ACA upgrade. For 7.5 years the GOP has been saying it is failing. How long does it take to fail? And for 7.5 years they have been saying they are repealing and replacing it.

      Trump wants it to implode. That's another way of saying doing nothing. How long will it take to implode? They should just make it a single payer system. But the GOP can't stand that because it means the government is funding it and then you hear about the nanny state and socialized medicine from conservatives.

      I have a 45 year old daughter who is self employed and is caught up in the individual mandate. She can't afford the premiums on her own, but the government subsidizes the balance of the premium for her. Without that she would be without health insurance. She works and earns a living. Is she in the nanny state? But what she pays helps fund those who have serious costly health issues. That's how group insurance works.

    • jackclee lm profile image
      Author

      Jack Lee 3 months ago from Yorktown NY

      President Obama did not need any Republican support or compromise. He said elections had consequences. He passed the ACA on his own terms. He knew he could not get the single payer because the people would not support it. He would have lost his second term if he did. He did the next best thing. He lied to get the ACA passsed and then designed it to fail after he left office. Voila... here we are.

    • peoplepower73 profile image

      Mike Russo 3 months ago from Placentia California

      Jack: The American people didn't get to vote on ACA. It was passed by congress. The reason Obama is saying "we have to take back the house and the senate" and not pass the single payer plan was to compromise with the GOP in order to get the act passed. How is ACA failing fulfilling Obama's wish?

    • jackclee lm profile image
      Author

      Jack Lee 3 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Peoplepower73. Here is the exact quote of Senator Obama in 2003 -

      “I happen to be a proponent of a single payer universal health care program.” (applause) “I see no reason why the United States of America, the wealthiest country in the history of the world, spending 14 percent of its Gross National Product on health care cannot provide basic health insurance to everybody. And that’s what Jim is talking about when he says everybody in, nobody out. A single payer health care plan, a universal health care plan. And that’s what I’d like to see. But as all of you know, we may not get there immediately. Because first we have to take back the White House, we have to take back the Senate, and we have to take back the House.”

      Obama speaking to the Illinois AFL-CIO, June 30, 2003.

      As you see, it was his plan all along. After ACA fails, he will get his wish fulfilled.

      In 2008, he did have both Houses of Congress on his side. What happened? The GOP couldn't stop him. It was the American people that did not want a single payer system...

    • peoplepower73 profile image

      Mike Russo 3 months ago from Placentia California

      Jack: That's a good article. If you recall, ACA was supposed to be a single payer program. However, Obama had to compromise with the GOP in order to get it passed.

    • jackclee lm profile image
      Author

      Jack Lee 3 months ago from Yorktown NY

      I agree with everything you said. Free market is best. However, under current climate, I don't see it every come to pass... That is why I believe single payer is next best thing...

    • breakfastpop profile image

      breakfastpop 3 months ago

      I have to say that Medicare actually works, although there are many doctors who are unhappy with the payments they receive. I have spoken to people in London who are not happy with single payer healthcare. Those able to pay for their own care, get better care by seeking private care. I had a friend who died from breast cancer who received treatment that was terribly outdated in the U.K. Canada is no bargain other. I worked for a neurologist for years, and we had patients from Canada seeking care in the U.S. because the wait list for an MRI was at least 2 years. Canadians with means leave the country and come to America. I think we should allow the free market to create a system that actually works. It is imperative that we attract young people who want to practice medicine. They should expect to make a decent living for their efforts. Competition would be a breath of fresh air when it comes to solving our problem. The government usually screws everything, just like they are doing now. Surely, there are people out there who can figure this out.