Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Health Insurance will get worse before it gets better

While the US is the only wealthy western country without universal health care (even Brazil has it), and the number of uninsured continues to climb, it will continue to get worse until far more middle class people feel the pain. Most of what has been proposed simply applies Bandaids to the problem. Few are prepared to blow the current system up and start from scratch. Few are prepared to take on the very strong lobbies of pharmaceutical companies, health insurance companies and health care providers simultaneously. Whether the country uses a single payer system like the UK and Canada do, or a tightly regulated insurance company managed one as in France or Germany, it will require major change. Even in France and Germany, insurance companies cannot turn anyone down, vary price by pre-existing conditions or age, or refuse reimbursement, which makes them the same as a single payer system in effect.

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