11 January 2007

Response: Arnold's plan

There's a great post over at Fixin' Healthcare about how you can't really call what we have a system, since it's actually systems within systems with no intelligent design. That being the case, reforming this "system" — rather than instituting single-payer — will actually exacerbate the dysfunction. "And, insurance has proven to be notoriously unreliable as an instrument for reform."

Matthew Holt, at the Health Care Blog, directs readers to Spot-On for his reaction to Governor Schwarzenegger's proposal for healthcare reform via mandated insurance.

Holt also likes Cohn's reaction (see below), and Lief Wellington Haase, of the Century Foundation.

Just how did we get to a place where Republican governors were proposing universal healthcare plans? (Albeit Republican, inefficient, catering-to-big-business ones...)
Haase offers a good round-up.

• Medical costs have kept going up, and employers and workers are feeling the pinch.
• Employers have run out of alternatives.
• States have taken the lead.
• Perceptions of U.S. medical care have changed.
• Health care costs are becoming a middle-class worry.
• Washington is finally paying attention.

Holt also links to Don McCanne, M.D., who has a response to Governor Schwarzenegger's proposal for healthcare reform through mandated insurance over at the Physicians for a National Health Plan's website. As to why Schwarzenegger's plan can't ultimately succeed in holding down costs or provide sustainable access, McCanne writes:

"The current administrative waste is due to our fragmented system of financing health care, and he would do nothing to bring about the structural reform required. It will be very difficult to reduce the 31% spent on administration without an efficient system such as single payer. He recommends health savings accounts, which, if they do reduce spending, would do so by making beneficial health services unaffordable for many individuals with unfunded or depleted accounts."


quixote said...

I'm here via CrooksandLiars, and now you're bookmarked. Great blog.

I can't express how sorry I am to see the awful consequences of our miserable system for you.

I didn't even read the Gropinator's proposal, since I figured it would be BS. And now I see that, sure enough, it's same-old, same-old. All these Republican plans seem to focus on siphoning money from people to corporations. No wonder they don't deliver much actual health care.

My own brush with the system wasn't tragic. I had it all: insurance, good care, and the whole nine yards. And it was still a nightmare. (I wrote "Shoot Me Now: health care in the new millenium" afterward.) A system that doesn't work for some people is a barbaric injustice. A system that doesn't work for anyone is useless as well.

SadButTrue said...

Terrific post, Kristen. You are emerging as the blogosphere's most effective health care critic.
Congratulations on your well-deserved inclusion in Mike's (Blue Gal's this week) Blog Roundup.

enigma4ever said...

really well done...
and the tale about the death from appendicitis should not have happened..ever.
as a nurse.
uncovered too...BTW...
we are in a crisis..
I will link to you....excellent..