Tuesday, August 25, 2009

I've written about a health care solution before. But Thom Hartmann has laid it out much better than I ever could with an open letter to President Obama. In it, he details a plan to open Medicare to everyone. It is very simple and can be done in " just a few lines".

This would be similar to what was done when disabled people were added to Medicare. See, it has even been done before - Medicare benefits extended to people younger than 65. It does not take a 1000+ pages nor do we have to wait until 2013 like in the House bill.

And he has a way to pay for it. People under 65 just pay a " rate to be set by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) which reflects the actual cost for us to buy into it.

So it’s revenue neutral!

To make it available to people of low income, raise the rates slightly for all currently non-eligible people (like me – under 65) to cover the cost of below-200%-of-poverty people. Revenue neutral again."

I bet you 100:1 that the rate set by CMS and HHS will be lower than what most people are paying now. Don't want a government program? Fine. Go buy private health insurance. Want additional benefits not covered in Medicare? Go buy supplemental insurance just like people over 65 do now.

Medicare is a popular program. Practically no one is saying that Medicare should be done away with. Unfortunately, practically no one is saying that Medicare should be expanded either.

What? Too simple of a solution for our congressional brain trust to understand?

Unfortunately I think it is a solution that will dry up the ejaculation of health care honey into the congressional coffers, something our congressmen will feel flaccid without. That is why you do not hear anything about this plan.

1 comment:

  1. A great solution, Jerry. Which means we won't have it (ever?)

    I've posted a link to your post on my blog.