Friday, October 21, 2016
1012 C Street  •  Floresville, TX 78114  •  Phone: 830-216-4519  •  Fax: 830-393-3219  • 

WCN Site Search

Preview the Paper Preview the Paper

Preview this week's Paper
A limited number of pages are displayed in this preview.
Preview this Week’s Issue ›
Subscribe Today ›

Lost & Found

VideoLost: White Poodle mix, F.M. 539 and Hwy. 87, Sutherland Springs area, needs medicine. Reward. Call 210-789-0118.
Found: Light brown large male puppy, approx. 1 year old, very lovable and sweet, no collar, near F.M. 537 and 427 off Hwy. 181. Call 830-393-9999 or 419-250-9099.
Lost: Black Angus calf, between C.R. 331 and C.R. 304 in Floresville, last seen headed towards Terrance and C.R. 304 from C.R. 331. Call Frasier, 830-391-3435.
More Lost & Found ads ›

Help Wanted

Childcare Ministries of LVUMC is taking applications for 2 after school teachers and 1 afternoon day school teacher, CPR a plus, training available. Call 830-779-5117 for information.
More Help Wanted ads ›

Featured Videos

Video Vault ›


America Marches Blindly Toward Single-Payer

E-Mail this Story to a Friend
Print this Story

The author of this entry is responsible for this content, which is not edited by the Wilson County News or
May 23, 2016 | 799 views | Post a comment

By Sally C. Pipes

Hillary Clinton just dipped her toe a little bit further into the waters of single-payer health care, prodded by her competitor for the Democratic presidential nomination, Bernie Sanders.

She recently called for allowing more people to join Medicare -- the government-run healthcare program for seniors -- by allowing those "55 or 50 and up" to buy into it. Sanders can no doubt take credit for pulling her further left -- his proposal to expand Medicare to all Americans has evinced cheers from his partisans.

But the record of other single-payer systems should silence those cheers. Single-payer would destroy health care quality and rob patients blind in the process.

Sanders has been agitating for single-payer for decades. The supposed price tag of his latest proposal for "Medicare-for-All?" About $14 trillion over 10 years, he's claimed.

But according to studies from the Urban Institute and the Tax Policy Center, the real cost would be about $33 trillion. Even after accounting for the revenue that Sanders's plethora of new taxes would take in, the government would still need $16 trillion.

Nevertheless, Sanders's focus on single-payer has attracted attention. A recent survey found that 63 percent of people had a positive reaction to the term "Medicare for all." Meanwhile, thousands of doctors recently signed on to a plan similar to Sanders's.

Some states could even green-light single-payer in the coming months. This November, Colorado voters will decide whether to create a state-level single-payer system. The initiative would cost $38 billion annually and require billions in new taxes.

Coloradans should take note of another state that tried to implement a single-payer system and failed -- Sanders's home state of Vermont.

The state's attempt at single-payer in 2014 was projected to cost $4.3 billion -- almost equivalent to the state's entire $4.9 billion budget. To fund the program, Vermont would have needed an extra $2 billion in revenue -- plus new taxes on businesses and residents. Officials abandoned the idea because it would have collapsed the state's economy.

The recent history of single-payer systems sponsored by the federal government isn't much more encouraging.

Take the Veterans Health Administration, which continues to subject beneficiaries to lengthy waits for care. In March, the Government Accountability Office tracked the experience of 180 newly-enrolled vets and found that 60 waited as many as 71 days to see a primary care doctor. Sixty more never even managed to get an appointment.

Patients haven't fared much better under single-payer systems abroad.

Horror stories from Britain's National Health Service emerge almost daily. Recently, a government investigation found that hospitals are discharging elderly patients without ensuring that they're fit to go home.

This spring, thousands of junior doctors went on strike. Patients had no choice but to wait for the walkout to end, as hospitals postponed more than 112,000 appointments and 12,700 operations in response.

Canada, my native land, has similar issues. Canadians must wait an average of 18.3 weeks to see a specialist after getting a referral. That wait time is 97 percent longer than it was in 1993. Almost 900,000 Canadians are waiting for treatment.

The promise of single-payer -- high-quality, universally accessible, free -- is nothing like the reality of such a system. Taxpayers pay dearly for the promise of such care.

This fall, voters must not allow themselves to fall prey to the siren song of single-payer.

Sally C. Pipes is President, CEO, and Thomas W. Smith Fellow in Health Care Policy at the Pacific Research Institute. Her latest book is The Way Out of Obamacare (Encounter 2016).
‹ Previous Blog Entry

Your Opinions and Comments

Be the first to comment on this story!

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Not a subscriber?
Subscriber, but no password?
Forgot password?

Commentaries Archives

Commentaries page
Commentaries who represents me?
Heavenly Touch homeTriple R DC ExpertsAllstate & McBride RealtyVoncille Bielefeld homeFriesenhahn Custom Welding

  Copyright © 2007-2016 Wilson County News. All rights reserved. Web development by Drewa Designs.