We were not going to write on the current issues of health insurance and health care but Catherine Rampell forced us into it. There are real important issues in the debate and decisions about what the federal government should do about health insurance and health care. Some of them include:
How to stop Medicare/Medicaid from bankrupting the government? See George Will at NRO.
Treating employer paid health insurance as taxable income. This creates all sorts of perverse incentives but might reduce the next issue.
How to keep the supply of health care sufficient despite price controls?
How to find competition so consumers have choices. One-third of the counties will have one Obamacare provider in 2017.
When we saw Catherine’s yogurt analogy headline we were hoping she would come out for less varieties of yogurt. The number of yogurt options at the supermarket is astounding. And then there is frozen yogurt. We could use a few less but then we don’t eat it in any case. Rather she suggests that there will be a plan that covers one kind of cancer but not another.
Sidebar: The University of Wisconsin System has 28 health plans and four different levels to choose from. That would be 112 choices. I’m sure Catherine thinks that is far too many for human processing. Not everybody at every school can enroll in all programs. End Sidebar.
Healthcare reform is difficult because there are lots of moving parts. The few choices that the GOP might add is not going to overwhelm consumers. Neither will the GOP be able to fix all that is wrong in one bill. We hope they make progress and hope that they recognize that the job won’t be finished. Let’s tune out Catherine and worry about serious stuff.