Surgery for our Health Care System

We elect our legislators and senators to make intelligent, informed decisions on our behalf in Washington. But the decision that narrowly passed in March 2010, HR3590 (formally known as the “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act,” better known as Obamacare) was neither intelligent nor informed.  Practically nobody in the House or Senate (or even their aides) had read the 3000-page monstrosity or understood what loopholes or pork-barrel amendments were tacked on.  They voted based on minimal information and they voted along party lines.  This vote led to the unintelligent decision to further American socialism.

Congress stepped well out of its constitutional boundaries by passing this bill, for nowhere in the Constitution does it mention that Congress shall have the power to distribute anything as it sees fit (the basis of Marxian socialism).  This bill is also unconstitutional in that it infringes upon the rights of American citizens to do as they please.  A quick history lesson: the Declaration of Independence lists numerous grievances that the colonists held against King George.  Many of these had to do with his too-repressive regime, yet, 225 years later, we again face a repressive government.  Jefferson’s exaltation of personal liberty seems nearly as bold now as it did in 1776. Nobody, especially not the government, should be able to tell us that we no longer have a “right” not to purchase health insurance. As the case goes to the Supreme Court two years after its inception, the only logical outcome should be defeat of the entire bill.

Obamacare also infringes upon insurers’ rights.  By providing healthcare to everybody at the expense of taxpayers, private insurers receive less compensation per patient, since the government doesn’t have the resources to pay the full bill for everyone.  Because of this, hospital and primary-care costs will rise, the price of insurance will rise, and taxes will rise yet again.

However, if the government completely stepped out of Medicaid, Medicare, and similar entitlement programs, the costs of healthcare would decrease. Fewer people would rush to the emergency room for every sprained ankle if they had to pay the deductible themselves rather than have taxpayers pay for it through Medicaid.  Doctors would receive more compensation per patient and thereby have money to spend recreationally, helping turn the recession (that has supposedly ended), into a full recovery.

Clearly, something needs to be done to increase America’s health IQ and cut down on unnecessary visits to the hospital.  Both my parents are public-health dentists and I have heard them say many a time, “If only we could get through to these people that the best way to keep their teeth and prevent a dental visit is to brush their teeth!”  Here, then, is the most simple solution to the American healthcare dilemma:  first, repeal Obamacare as quickly as possible, and with the case headed to the spring session of the Supreme Court, there is a distinct possibility of defeat. Second, and more importantly, the general American populace needs to be educated in healthy habits.  Things as simple as brushing teeth, washing hands, basic first aid, and eating healthily could easily be taught to schoolchildren, by example on popular TV shows, or through advertisements.  Such instruction would help prevent needless trips to the hospital and possibly lower healthcare costs for everyone, not just those on government-funded health programs.  But, until somebody more important than me realizes this, we will be stuck with a critically injured health system.

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