One of the worst afflictions that our country faces is the abhorrent health care system that is in place. Nearly 50 million are uninsured in what is the wealthiest country on the planet and many that are insured do not get adequate coverage. Why is this you ask? This crisis has occurred because of insurance companies being allowed to favor profits over helping those in need. We need a change in the status quo and I am looking to our Presidential candidates for answers.
John Edwards recently introduced his plan which set the standard among the 2008 potentials and the American public will look closely at his ideas and those to follow. Well NYT columnist Paul Krugman analyzed the details of the Health Market system which allows people to get insurance even without their employers offering a good plan.
From the NY Times:
Why is this such a good idea? As the Edwards press release points out, marketing and underwriting the process of screening out high-risk clients are responsible for two-thirds of insurance companies overhead. With insurers selling to government-run Health Markets, not directly to individuals, most of these expenses should go away, making insurance considerably cheaper.
Better still, Health Markets, the press release says, will offer a choice between private insurers and a public insurance plan modeled after Medicare. This would offer a crucial degree of competition. The public insurance plan would almost certainly be cheaper than anything the private sector offers right now after all, Medicare has very low overhead. Private insurers would either have to match the public plan's low premiums, or lose the competition.
And Mr. Edwards is O.K. with that. Over time, the press release says, the system may evolve toward a single-payer approach if individuals and businesses prefer the public plan.
Well how about that? The government can put its hand into the market and save people money on the most important thing in their lives, their health.