I think my doctor does a good job.
I think his nurse practitioners do a good job. The other nurses who work there seem competent.
I like my insurance company. I think most insurance companies do a good job, the notable exception being Anthem Health.
(Please allow me a brief digression while I do something to attract Googlers..... Anthem Health Worst Insurance Company. Anthem Health Ripoff. Warnings Against Anthem Health. Anthem Health Sucks. Anthem Health Poor Quality Insurance. Anthem Health delays paying claims.) There. I feel better now.
Why does Washington want to interfere in the relationship between my doctor and me? Because they don't have enough control over it. Most people want wealth; people in Washington generally want power - a subject for another post.
I would prefer a single-payer system. I pay a doctor.
The most disheartening thing about the current healthcare debate is the lack of Free Market proposals like this one:
Flood the market with healthcare. (I work in the shipping, logistics and freight industry, and that qualifies me to comment on these issues. I also know what happened to prices when shipping, telephones and airlines were deregulated.)
Why are things expensive? Because they are scarce.
Why are doctors scarce? Ask the American Medical Association. If you control the supply of something, you control its price. As long as medical schools don't turn out too many doctors, healthcare will be expensive.
Next question.... Have you ever met a nurse who didn't believe she/he could do 90% of what doctors do? I haven't.
So why can't someone voluntarily go to a nurse for treatment? Or for that matter, why can't someone go to a neighbor who has done a little reading on the subject? Once again, ask the American Medical Association. They limit the supply of people approved to do the job. They put all those regulations in place for your own good, you know. A comparison of savings accounts might also reveal that they're making more money than you.
What about drugs? Ha! Talk to a pharmaceutical rep. By the time a medication is certified, licensed, pedigreed, registered, lawyer-proofed and put through trials, the pharmaceutical companies have spent somewhere around a billion dollars in development. Is there anyone out there economically illiterate enough to state that this expense doesn't stifle the development of new drugs?
What would happen to the cost of healthcare if we simply opened the doors for more practitioners? If I have the flu, I know going into the doctor's office that I'm going to leave with a prescription for Ampicillin and a warning that I need to lose some weight. Is there a nurse out there who could do the same job in less time for about twenty bucks?
Yes. If you choose not to visit this nurse, that's your choice. I am the owner of me. You are the owner of you.
Doctors whine and moan about the high cost of malpractice insurance. What would happen to the cost of medical care if patients were given a lower-cost option in exchange for signing an "I won't sue the doctor" waiver?
The internet (and I assume TV and newspapers) has been abuzz with editorializing about healthcare being a "right". Maybe it is, but there are different ways of stating this right. I believe that I have the right to make my own decisions about medical care. If those decisions involve University of Texas M.D.'s, Homeopathic remedies, Santeria goat sacrifices, or even something as risky as a V.A. hospital, the choice should be mine.
But, you ask, what if something goes wrong? What if there are bad nurses, bad drugs, or ineffective Santeria priests? What will we do if we're not all in the nurturing bosom of Uncle Sam?
We will do this:
Avoid Anthem Health. Anthem Health's computer system BLOWS. DO NOT SIGN UP FOR ANTHEM HEALTH.
I think the savings would be enormous.
Pics from here and from this guy who also had issues with Anthem Health.