The rate at which we are speeding towards socialized medicine alarms me. Like flies to a fly zapper, I feel that many people are supportive of it because they are attracted to the word "free". Are we really supposed to believe the health care will be free if Uncle Sam is in charge? I'm amazed that we are even considering socialized medicine with examples world wide of the misery, decrease in quality care, and waiting lists in which we would become entangled. Is anyone familiar with VA Hospitals? There's government run health care for you. And let's talk about Medicare. The government decides how Medicare patients are treated when afflicted with certain illnesses. They even dictate, after a certain age, whether or not a patient can receive certain treatments. Who really wants that?
While I know many are opposed to socialized medicine, I have heard no suggestions on what to replace it with. Until now. Here are two examples I have been made aware of as to how we can improve our health care system- without handing the government our rights to quality treatment.
1. Mayo Clinic is one of the nation's leaders in quality health care- even praised by Pres. Obama himself. They are so good, leaders from other nations seek out treatment at their facilities (perhaps they are unhappy with the health care available in their own countries...?). Check out Mayo's Cornerstones of Reform (create value, coordinate care, reform the payment system, provide health insurance for all). What I find particularly interesting is the idea that the individual would own their insurance, therefore, guaranteeing coverage between jobs. You might be interested in their grassroots campaign, Healthcare Repair.
2. I recently became aware of the health care plan Safeway makes available to their employees. Here is an article from the Wall Street Journal giving a summary. It is completely voluntary, although 74% of their nonunion workforce use it, and 70% of the employees that use it rated it good, very good, or excellent. It is modeled after car insurance- rewarding healthy behavior (vs. safe driving) and giving financial incentives. Don't you think that personal responsibility and choice are two things that our nation need?
These are just two examples of reform (sans government) that I have heard of so far. If you know of other alternatives, please comment and let me know. The fact is, is that government is not our only solution. Nor should it be our solution. If this is a matter of importance to you, write your state representatives and tell them to leave government out of health care.