Saturday, June 24, 2017

Thinking Small with Healthcare

It's been a long time since I've tackled discussing healthcare other than to say I like having choices.  The government currently is working on dismantling (sort of) what is commonly referred to as ObamaCare and they've made significant changes to Medicaid, which is the healthcare coverage for the indigent.  This has left people upset because of the cuts.  So lets dive in.

1) Healthcare for all.
I've spoken about my desire to have everyone have access to healthcare without the loss of freedom of choice.  I don't think that I need rehash this only to say that I think people are going about this wrong way.

2)Healthcare as a matter for the Federal government? Nope.
This is the part where someone confuses me with a conservative or a libertarian. Conservatives are for small government.  Liberals are for small business.  I'm for both.  So where does that leave me?  Somewhere in the center, a moderate, I suppose. 

What does this have to do with healthcare?  Well, I don't think it's the job of the Federal government to provide all the healthcare options for the poor/working poor.  Please re-read that last line carefully before commenting because someone didn't and got upset with me.

I never said they shouldn't have access.  I said it's poor planning to place ones eggs in ones basket and have the Federal government be the only source and summit of all healthcare for those who cannot procure it financially.  If I enjoy options, why can't the poor as well?

Local communities should be providing more free/reduced healthcare services.  We should be encouraging such clinics.  That's the bottom line.  It's also in line with Catholic teaching which says that the lowest form of community/government should be in charge of such things.  In looking at the history of healthcare in US we have historically tried to go this route while back pedaling into federally regulated healthcare.  This is the reason why Catholic hospitals exist in the US.  Communities took it upon themselves to look after each other.

Someone asked me how this would look. I admit I'm not entirely sure.  The whole system is a weave of grants from different sources of funds currently even within free/reduced healthcare clinics/communities.  The Little Sisters of the Poor themselves both beg for donations and also except Medicare reimbursements for their patients.  At the end of the day, it would certainly change how our government withholds finances from our pay check. 

It would also be nice if we encouraged taking care of our communities.  We've been taught that bigger government is necessary for healthcare, but I don't think that's true.  I think we can at a universal system but on a local level.  It's how federalism is supposed to work.

3) Single Payer? No.
As I said I believe in having more choices and less restrictions.  Single-payer eliminates this.  Canada has suffered with single-payer.  Long wait times for surgery have led people to go lame and blind waiting for hip replacement and cataract surgeries.  It doesn't seem like a great solution.  Not to mention that tax payers will be paying for immoral or objectionable services because it's done by vote without the ability to opt out. 

I think Medical Sharing groups are good.  Purchasing your own healthcare and having several choices in that are good.  It would be similar to purchasing car insurance or life insurance or home insurance.

At any rate, it's something I'm still working out.  Our current healthcare system is so convoluted that it makes understanding how purchasing healthcare or receiving healthcare difficult.  I wish it was as simple as transportation.  Some can purchase a car and also coverage for that car while others who may or may not afford can use ride sharing, taxis, subway, light rail, or public buses to get themselves around.  More choices=better in my opinion.  And thinking in terms of being smaller and more diverse I think will end up being a benefit to our country.  I think thinking larger and less causes more problems.

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I love to read your thoughts. Thanks for sharing!