A different take on free market health care

The letter by Jeff Jared (Kirkland Reporter, Dec. 25) expounding the need for “free market” health care needs a response.

Mr. Jared wants to “unshackle” health insurance. Requiring insurance coverage for birth control or mental health, he writes, makes the plan a “Cadillac.” He wants people to choose such coverage only if they are fairly certain they will need the service (does anyone feel the first “sniffles” of an oncoming schizophrenia attack?).

The net effect is a drastically reduced pool of buyers resulting in skyrocketing premiums, which reduces the number of people able to afford the service, which jacks up the premium further, and on and on. It seems Mr. Jared needs to brush up on the basics of insurance.

Several other points are listed. Among the more startling are: private accreditation of medical/nursing schools, reducing/downgrading the FDA, selling antibiotics OTC and disallowing individual deductions for medical expenses. Each of these would have severe adverse consequences. Together they would lead to a catastrophe.

Just imagine going to your doctor and seeing a framed medical degree from Trump University on the wall, or having to decide whether to use an obscenely expensive “super” drug, touted as a cure for cancer, that was allowed to bypass the FDA. Misuse of prescription antibiotics is bad enough already. Antibiotics made available OTC is a nothing but a deadly fast track recipe for creating new untreatable super bugs. And who do you think is hurt when tax deduction for medical expenses, such as it is, is entirely eliminated? The wealthy?

One final thing: On the face of it, buying health insurance across state lines does sound good. Until one looks into it a little deeper. There is a reason why services can be offered cheaper in certain states. It’s called lack of regulations. I hope you like having deep conversations on medical issues with an IVR machine. Don’t look at our state attorney general’s office for help when things go south.

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