Thursday, December 3, 2009

Defending the. Two Paragraph Health Reform System

Yesterday, I put forward a super simplified health reform plan:

1) All US citizens and legal residents are automatically enrolled in the Medicaid program and will pay a fee equal to 5% of adjusted gross income, unless exempt by paragraph #2.

2) Persons having proof of health insurance or who have sufficient assets not to need health insurance are exempt from the requirements of paragraph #1.

Although I'm not proposing or supporting it. I've had a number of people ask me questions regarding it. So, I will post some questions and some responses.

1) Q. Won't expending Medicaid cause everyone to drop private insurance and move to the public program?
     A. As long as providers and facilities are free to accept or refuse Medicaid patients Medicaid patients, then private insurers will offer plans with richer and better payment structures. Quite simply, their sales pitch is: “your doctor will not accept Medicaid, they will accept our insurance”..

2) Q. Your program is only available to US citizens and legal residents. What about the illegal immigrants?
    A. Nothing prohibits private insurers from offering policies to no citizens, and non legal residents. A provision could be added, that if someone other than the US citizen or legal resident is given medical care and they do not pay for it, that could be a deportable offense.

3) Q. There is no exemption for the poor paying the 5% health fee?
     A. There is no exemption for the poor to pay sales taxes or property taxes. Since everyone has the benefit of the expanded Medicaid program, why should they not have to pay something? On a $12,000 year income, the premium is $50 per month, regardless of how many children in the family.

4) Q. Why should a rich person have to pay such a high amount? A person earning $1 million / year would have to pay $50,000?
    A. Since this program makes healthcare a right, then funding healthcare, becomes an obligation of all Americans. In other words, we now call it what it is “A TAX” and not an insurance premium. The fact is the wealthy pay more in taxes than the poor.

Again, I am not proposing, supporting or endorsing the two paragraph health plan. I am simply pointing out that if we really wanted to solve healthcare, we could do it, and it would be a lot easier than what is going on in Washington today.


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