To the editor:
The Senate Health Care Bill continues to rely on the fantasy that there is a free market in health care. Obamacare attempted to create one with the state exchanges but that is failing because there really is no free market for the consumers or the health care providers and ideology or wishful thinking will not make it so.
If Congress were really courageous it could bring huge savings to all individuals, employers and government itself by replacing Obamacare with Medicare for everybody. Medicare is not socialized medicine. We have an excellent agency that knows how to run it nationwide, health services and consumers both are familiar with it, and it does a great job for the health of the population.
If Congress would remove the budget constraints for enforcement and follow-up there would be little fraud. The savings would be even more significant if Congress would remove the restrictions on negotiation. Medicare should negotiate for drugs, equipment and services just like the General Services Administration and other departments. That will be as close to a free market as you can get in health care.
Not only would the country be healthier but the savings for employers could result in many new jobs as disposable income skyrockets with lower costs and less sickness. That would be a real path to American greatness.
It takes practicality, not ideology, to run a country efficiently and effectively. Get real, Congress, and give us practical government and services, not smoke and mirrors about how great it’s gonna be.
Donald A. Smith