by Robert Anderson
No doubt everyone has noticed that the mandated medical insurance application process at Obamacare exchanges is an unmitigated disaster. And what a blessing it is! But let us stay focused on the real issue rather than become distracted by these incredible computer “glitches” now. Be grateful for this early-warning wake-up call since a far worse medical scenario is most likely in our future.
It’s a total fiction that everyone can live off of everyone else through the taxing power of the state, and this is especially true of something as essential as medical care. But far more important than the economic cost of medical care is the quality and efficacy of medical care delivered, as well as the development of new emerging medical technology. Excellent medical care prevails only when competent health providers are available and willing to treat patients with a personal and caring relationship existing between them. If you believe it is possible that bureaucrats in Washington, D.C. can make decisions regarding your medical care better than the judgment of local medical doctors, I know of a bridge you can buy in Brooklyn!
The current chaos of the government handling of medical insurance applications is merely a forewarning of what is to come when a centralized bureaucratic monopoly controls what medical care you can receive, from whom, and worse yet, when you will receive it, if at all. Already in our community, as well as throughout the country, medical doctors are fleeing the private practice of medicine either through retirement, reduced hours of practice, or by joining hospitals or clinics as hourly employees.
When patients and physicians lose their freedom of choice in medical care the quality of their lives quickly deteriorates. Is it not obvious when Obamacare increases total patient demand for “free” medical care while discouraging medical care providers from continuing to offer their accustomed medical services, that both quality and availability of medical care will surely suffer?
The failure of the “public exchanges” is a red flag warning. We can hope that this warning will prove to be an awakening to the economic reality that the Federal government seizure and control of medical care away from the traditional patient/physician relationship is a coming nightmare in the making. It should also remind us that the future is not always better, especially when we act unwisely. Surrendering one’s health care to the decisions of government bureaucrats is surely not wise!
(The author is a retired economics professor at both Grove City College and Hillsdale College.)