March 24, 2011
The Federal Government has been meddling in the free market for decades which is why many areas of our economy such as healthcare have only a faint hint of free market remaining.
History shows that since the 1900’s the Federal Government has attempted to control the healthcare industry through regulation and taxes in an effort to provide services to all Americans. This effort has instead reduced access, and increased the power of Government which violates the Constitution and interferes with our Liberty and Freedom.
The “fork in the road” moment for the healthcare system, was the 1942 Stabilzation Act which froze wages but permiteed employer health insurance plans as a fringe benefit. This was then followed in 1949 with a ruling from the National Labor Relations Board, that wages included pension and insurance benefits which set the course for Unions to be able to include pensions and health insurance in negotiations.
What do we have to show for all the Federal and State interference in the healthcare market?
- Creation of a 3rd party payer system as now employers pay the majority of insurance premiums and the insurance pays the majority of the medical costs and the consumer pays only a portion of all costs. Whenever someone else pays the bill, this always leads to escalating prices as the ususal market constraints do not apply!!
- Lack of portability as insurance is tied to employment
- Fee for service model which is transactions are direct between the buyer and seller (patient and doctor) has almost disappeared as insurance companies and the government now set prices without regard to costs, supply or demand.
- Government mandates have led to fewer choices, increased costs in insurance and increased medical costs
- Overconsumption of medical goods and services as the co-pays and deductibles have been pushed to levels that the consumer no longer makes a choice on real need but rather; “why not, it only costs $50”.
- Increased cost of medical treatments due to lack of consumer pressure, 3rd party payer system, forced treatments of non-paying customers and reduced reimbursement rates for medicare and medicaid that are passed on to other paying consumers.
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act centers on the Federal Government mandating to states and to individuals what products they must purchase, how the products will be sold, delivered and managed.
Is this really the role of Federal Government?
By implementing any form of the PPCA we are in essence allowing the Federal Government to have control over us and in doing so are forfeiting our rights at the both the state and individual level.
The President at the National Governor’s Association meeting said: “As long as those plans provide equally comprehensive, affordable insurance coverage to at least as many residents as the Affordable Care Act provides. And these plans would have to do so while insuring that they would not add to the federal deficit”, according to a White House press release. Opt out as long as it’s the same as Ocare would impose.”
By moving forward with SB11-200 Health Benefit Exchange, the State of Colorado is in essence forfeiting its rights and powers and is aquiescing to the Federal Government. SB11-200 IS part of implementing PPCA and while it is framed as allowing states to “opt out” of PPCA, make no mistake HHS is dictating the terms now for these state exchanges and in the future.
Any state that accepts the premise that the Federal government has the authority to allow states to opt out, is also accepting the premise that the federal government has the authority to demand the states do as they say in all matters relating to healthcare.
Is this what you as a citizen of Colorado wish to happen? Whether you are Democrat, Republican or Independent, is health insurance really worth the price of your liberty?