Thursday, June 11, 2009

Healthcare Reform: Money is the problem

The greater problems, if not all, we have in society, are caused in the pursuit of money.

America has all the resources necessary to provide accessible, high quality, and universal healthcare: with a non-monetary economic system, such as a resource-based economic system, we would not even be discussing whether or not our healthcare system should be private or public, or single payer. In the absence of money, we would be discussing authentic ways to find cures and keep people healthier with preventive care. Physicians and other healthcare providers, absent of the need for profit, making their career choices based on their passion for medicine and helping people rather than on monetary return, would have opportunities beyond their wildest dreams.

Without the influence of money, we would have a healthcare system completely free of Healthcare Inequality and Inequity: there would not be 48,000 uninsured Americans.

As Walter Tsou, M.D., M.P.H., Medical Director of the Montgomery County Health Department explains: There are various versions of how people interpret national health insurance. My vision would separate the delivery of health care [resources] from the role of financing [money]. Our current system puts the cart before the horse. Insurers determine how much they want to finance and then force providers to decide what can be provided on these dollars. In a resource-based economy, healthcare decisions would be made between the patient, doctor, and hospital, not with insurers, which in the end insurers are always acting in the best interest of their investors.

Capitalism in its pure form may be an outstanding system. I don’t know I have never experienced it. However, American Capitalism cannot cure the health care system. Reliance on free enterprise and capitalism, American style, has not worked. Our economic system in its present form is what got us into this quagmire in the first place.

The best vision of a healthcare system that is doable today, in our zeitgeist, is one expounded by Dr. Walter Tsou in his article Health care as public good. On Wednesday, June 10th, at a congressional hearing on single payer, Dr. Tsou gave an outstanding short presentation of his vision.

All of America’s and the World’s efforts must be directed toward an eventual resource-based economy. It’s the only way to solve the problem of money. Over time, we can accomplish this enormous task: it is very doable; it is very dynamic; it is extremely viable.

In the meantime, we are going to have to settle for, what seems by some, and it is in a money-based economy, socialized medicine (note: in a resource-based economy, the word socialism would not exist). For now, we will have to struggle with the problem of money. For now, in our zeitgeist, in our present stage of world evolution it is the only way. For America, this should take the form of universal health care and a single payer healthcare system, with an private insurance option for those who can afford the cost.

This, the most important domestic issue of our time, must be supported. Write, blog, speak, and take whatever action with which you are comfortable to get this legislation passed.