Among the welter of brain dead notions propagated by an ossified Democratic Party is the idea that universal access to health care will necessarily improve the quality of life in the USA. Their spokespersons cite the higher life expectancy in their own mecca in Europe. The reality is that citizens in countries like Canada are pressing for access to health care in the private sector especially in its Western provinces. Also, health tourism in Canada is rising as its citizens,unwilling to wait for care, are traveling to countries like India where they can buy care at a lower cost. This is the kind of failed "universal care" system that Democrats are prescribing for the USA.
In the final analysis, access to health care will depend on its costs. Efficient use of resources can free resources that can be shared with those who do not have the means to pay for their health care. Just like food stamps ensure that the poor can eat, health vouchers could be used to help the uninsured pay for their care. This can only happen if the patently inefficient health sector is reorganized to lower costs. Walk into most doctor's office and you will still see paper files! Yes, here in the USA.
All too often patients are unable to distinguish between disease and a wellness issue. For a long-time, I suffered from stomach acidity, diarrhea and similar problems. All tests, however, showed that I was fine. Much later, after doing my own research, I realized that I had a digestion problem which could be cured by consuming fibrous foods, eating whole grain bread and by avoiding gluten. Doctors, on the other hand, were mindlessly prescribing pills which aggravated the problem. Many others told me a similar story. Just imagine how much money must be lost in the absence of elementary education about common conditions best cured by home remedies.
Recently, the Milken Institute has assembled facts to show how easily health costs can be lowered in the USA. Obesity and smoking account for a very high share of the trillion dollars that it costs to treat chronic diseases like diabetes, pulmonary problems, etc. Surely, this is something that individual responsibility will help reduce. If we had to pay insurance premiums and not our employers, we will pretty soon see sense and lower our weight. Similarly, we would quit smoking.
Most individuals are daunted by the prospect of paying for their own health care. They tend to overlook the benefits; their health premiums will be reduced if they take preventive measures to improve their health. If they stay well, the value of their health accounts will continue to increase and could be later used for their retirement.
Costs are also high because doctors are unable to absorb all the information they need to prescribe the best therapies. I was reading recently about a study which looked at how doctors treat infected tonsils. As a parent, I was aware of two contrary approaches to treatment of tonsils of my then young child; you either live with the recurring cold and cough that he suffered or have the tonsils removed. This study that I incidentally read in the book "Random Walk down Wall Street" found that in a sample of patients, half were advised to live with the problem and the others to have the tonsils operated. When those who were advised to live with the problem took a second opinion, half were recommended an operation and the others to live with the problem. Again, those who were advised to live with the problem were taken to other doctors and the result was the same each time. This is like rolling a dice to come to a conclusion.
The fund of medical knowledge out there is just too much for individual doctors to absorb on their own. Doctors need information technology that can help store data on the procedures followed and the outcomes. They can then rely on statistically valid approaches besides their own individual judgment rather than take chances with their patients.
In the end, common sense will help solve problems in the health sector. This is entirely missing in the way Democrats think....