Obama Health Care Illusions?
There is a major health care dispute going around that discusses whether President Obama’s plan to spend big now in order to provide coverage to the middle classlater will backfire in the long run. The thought is that Obama is suffering from health care illusions; that the costs that he thinks he will be saving in the future will never come to be, and we will have spent all of this money for nothing.
It’s actually not an unreasonable argument.
If you think about it, health care spending hasn’t decreased in over four decades – since Medicare was created in 1965. Why should any plan he creates be able to change that now or in the near future? Both public and private attempts to slow the coverage-cost climb have failed decade after decade.
But budget chief Peter Orszag says this time, things will be different. Or at least he hopes they will. For him, the key to making the adjustment that will finally lower costs is creating the relationship between health care spending and a patient’s quality of care. His argument is that often times too much money is spent for sub-par care. If high-cost areas are reduced down to the equivalent of low-cost areas, up to $700 billion a year could be saved, which in turn could pay for the health care Obama wants to provide to workers.
This is his theory. However, others who say that there is really no way to determine why health care costs are so high since everything is local in health care and hard to summarize nationally, believe that the ability to create a national care system is nearly impossible. In other words, Obama’s and Orszag’s ideas are more theories than sure-fire, executable plans.
So what do you think? Can Obama’s health care plan really save the state of health care and finally provide suitable coverage for the millions of uninsured and underinsured? Or will it simply result in higher spending forpatients with no high-quality results as it has in decades past? Are we going to be the victims of Obama health care illusions?
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