THE POLITICS OF AMERICAN HEALTHCARE
By Dr. Charles L. Armstrong, M.D., in Human Events posted April 28, 2005
Forwarded by BGen Robert Clements USAF (ret)
Within the past few years I have read repeatedly in the opinion sections of newspapers the call for the federal government to provide a “single payer” system for America's medical care. These proposals are classics of left-wing thinking - they work out beautifully in the heads of those doing the proposing.
The comedy occurs when they are subjected to the scrutiny of reality; the tragedy when they become reality.
Government involvement in medicine exacerbates rather than alleviates its ills. HMOs and the government are pre-paid systems that are the cause of the financial crisis facing health care (I mean in addition to the contribution of greedy lawyers and irrational juries).
A caller on a talk show recently commented: “The rest of the world has a one-payer government system, so why don't we?”
The answer: Because then we'll have the same quality of care of the rest of the world.
Socialized medical care is a disaster worldwide for patients who need attention now or tomorrow or by next week, especially if that attention entails a procedure or surgery.
I offer the perspective of a practitioner who has lived through the changes in the system. The cost of health care has increased alarmingly during the decades of my career because of third-party payer systems: HMOs and the government. Health care costs will increase and quality decrease with every increase in government involvement.