We Can Fix Health Care with Economic Freedom and Free Markets

President Obama’s Health Care Summit is coming next week.  Just think.  America spends about $2.4 T (that’s trillion, not billion or million of dollars) on health care on a yearly basis.  That represents about 18% of America’s GDP.  Of that amount, around 50% is controlled directly by government and government indirectly controls most of the rest through tax and regulatory policies.

When government CONTROLS something, individuals DO NOT CONTROL it.  When government CONTROLS a market or industry segment, individuals LOSE ECONOMIC FREEDOM to control their own money and lives.  Our health care system today is essentially government-controlled.  It’s certainly not a free market.

Currently, with considerable government-control, health care costs are risely at a rate of about 2% a year greater than America’s overall economy, not a sustainable situation.  Change is needed.  Some in Washington mistakenly think that government can “reform” the mess that government itself created.  But, new government controls and new government taxes will not fix the mess.  Instead, it will raise costs and cut benefits.  Innovation and quality will suffer too.  Plus, rationing of services is a foregone conclusion if there is a complete takeover of the health care industry by government.

Instead of increasing government control and increasing taxes, let’s move from our broken health care system largely controlled by government to a free market based health care system.  Here are some things we can do.  There are other free market solutions we can add to this list:

  • Free up insurers to create new types of health insurance plans that target specific market needs and that offer plans at differernt price points to allow consumers to target their own needs precisely.
  • Eliminate forced mandates on insurance companies to unnecessairly add expensive coverages to all policies.
  • Eliminate restrictions on insurance company competition to help reduce costs to consumers.
  • Encourage health care insurance to be portable.
  • Eliminate the current fixed payment system for doctors.  Allow doctors to innovate with new service and pricing models.
  • Limit medical malpractice liability with caps on non-economic damage awards, in order to cut litigation costs, cut malpractice insurance premium costs, and cut defensive medicine costs.  According to one source, about 40% of medical liability lawsuits are without merit.
  • Eliminate price controls.
  • Permit consumers, insurers and doctors to have and to exercise economic freedom.  Permit all Americans to make economic decisions freely on their own without unneccessary government interference. 
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