Obamacare will drive health care to the free market

Compelling Evidence Makes the Case for a Market-Driven Health Care System by James Capretta and Kevin Dayaratna, at the Heritage Foundation.

The authors make the following key points:

  • The United States does not have a market-driven health insurance system, much less a functioning competitive market for health services.
  • Through overly restrictive policies, Medicare, Medicaid, and tax subsidies, the federal government has dominated the operation of the U.S. health care system for the past half-century.
  • Federal policies are largely responsible for driving up costs and making health insurance unaffordable for so many Americans.
  • Many economists believe that health care is inherently different from other industries and cannot operate in a normal marketplace. Yet, the distortions resulting from government policy have largely insulated consumers from their health care choices.
  • Multiple studies have found that, with proper incentives and reliable information, Americans treat their health care purchases the way they do other expenditures—searching out the best service at the best price. It is time for reform planners and cost estimators to acknowledge these findings.

With a couple of slight modifications, these points fairly summarize a course on health administration that I took as a senior at the University of Colorado in 1973.  It was a course offered to seniors interested in the master’s program then being offered at the CU Medical School.  The course confirmed what I believed then and still believe.  The only health care system that can control costs while maintaining high quality health care is a fee-for-service system where the fees are paid by the patient, at least for routine primary care.  True insurance would only cover catastrophic care that most people will never need.  Therefore, it would be easy for most people to afford.

Obamacare will, I predict, give rise to a movement toward concierge doctors and self-pay health care for those who can afford it.  Ironically, it will also mean less care and much lower quality health care for those who don’t have the ability to take advantage of the boutique health care clinics that will develop.  More proof that liberals are lying when they tell you they care about the little guy. It’s always the little guy that gets screwed by the idiotic public policies liberals like Barack Obama foist on an unsuspecting public.

Read the whole thing.