It will increase utilization of medical care (increased costs), require additional taxes, cut Medicare and create a new government bureaucracy to control the entire healthcare industry.
We receive excellent health care in the United States. Our rate of death and disease has more to do with our unhealthy choices than anything else. We must take personal responsibility for health. This can’t be legislated. Education is critically important. Unhealthy lifestyles are costing us dearly, individually and collectively. We ignore this at our nation’s peril.
My suggestions are to make insurance companies compete so that only the cost-efficient, high-quality plans survive; lower the costs to bring medications to market; seek tort reform (allow doctors to decrease medical costs); and emphasize preventive medicine (education).
We need the best ideas of all our elected representatives. Neither political party should force through legislation without open, honest debate and compromise. President Obama referred to the current proposal as a “patients’ bill of rights on steroids.” Well, steroids have significant undesirable side effects.
Let the honest work begin. Let’s get this right. Our very lives are depending on it.
David A. Judge, M.D.