Thursday, 28 June 2012

US Plan for Medicare Is Constitutional-!

It was good to learn that the US Supreme Court ruled 5-4 to uphold Obamacare this morning. That's basically good news, even though the plan has great problems.  Chief among them is that it is insurance-based and not single-payer.

The former sort of plan integrates all the inefficiencies of insurance run by for-profit companies into the health system.  An example of where this sort of system can go awry is Quebec's pharmacare plan.   Sure, everyone  is protected from the high cost of drugs, but since there is no central body negotiating drug prices, they are going up and up. 

In contrast, the single payer provincial health insurance schemes are remarkably efficient when it comes to administration.  Most also are able to bargain good prices for drugs used in hospitals.

The adminstrative labyrinth in the US health insurance scheme seems certain to raise costs.  Too bad Obama and company weren't bolder when they set out their program.  Hindsight is better than foresight, of course, and who would have thought that the conservative Chief Justice John Roberts would have sided with those in favour of Obamacare?

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