Duke visiting professor John D. Lewis attempts to dissect the massive 1,000 page health care reform bill, and address some of the most talked-about and controversial proposals included in it.
Some highlights include:
1. WILL THE PLAN RATION MEDICAL CARE?
The government has the power to determine what constitutes an “applicable [medical] condition.”
3. The government has the power to determine who is allowed readmission into a hospital.
4. This determination will be made by statistics: when enough people have been discharged for the same condition, an individual may be readmitted.
5. This is government rationing, pure, simple, and straight up.
6. There can be no judicial review of decisions made here. The Secretary is above the courts.
7. The plan also allows the government to prohibit hospitals from expanding without federal permission: page 317-318.
4. Will the PLAN destroy private health insurance?
1. The bill does not prohibit a person from buying private insurance.
2. Small businesses—with say 8-10 employees—will either have to provide insurance to federal standards, or pay an 8% payroll tax. Business costs for health care are higher than this, especially considering administrative costs. Any competitive business that tries to stay with a private plan will face a payroll disadvantage against competitors who go with the government “option.”
3. The pressure for business owners to terminate the private plans will be enormous.
4. With employers ending plans, millions of Americans will lose their private coverage, and fewer companies will offer it.
5. The Commissioner (meaning, always, the bureaucrats) will determine whether a particular network of physicians, hospitals and insurance is acceptable.
6. With private insurance starved, many people enrolled in the government “option” will have no place else to go
Any claims that the current medical care/health insurance industry in this country resembles a “free market” is completely absurd. The majority of the problems result from too much government interference and control – to think that even more government control will improve the situation is purely blind faith in authoritarian force.