United States – Single Payer Universal Health Care

October 1, 2013

By Padmini Arhant

United States health care debate renewed in 2013 provides opportunity for national movement seeking single payer system otherwise known as universal care in consideration of costs analyses favoring taxpayer dollars investment in comprehensive health care benefits for all.

The status quo evidently has at least 46 to 50 million Americans uninsured with Medicaid and Medicare criteria only allowing those qualifying the category.

Notwithstanding these programs constantly threatened with possible elimination under fiscal responsibility pretext amid bipartisan approval of wasteful spending in illegal warfare, sponsoring terrorism and multi billion dollars aid to Israel other than regional funding to safeguard nuclear Israel’s security.

In the health care reform passed in 2010 – the failure to enforce premium cap and measures to maintain affordability contributes to exorbitant costs depriving patients from receiving necessary medical relief and life saving procedures now and in the future.

Furthermore, effective January 2014 the mandatory subscription in the bill with penalty on non-compliance designed to favor health insurance industry would exacerbate citizens suffering in the dire economy heightened with misplaced priority to fund terror activities in Syria and expansion of militarism in the Asia Pacific titled pivot to Asia and Africom in the African continent.

Single payer implemented in other industrialized nations proved to be economically prudent and financially profitable to participating companies in the standardized method avoiding unnecessary expenses while facilitating diverse health care options through private management. 

The tax dollars divestment in socialized medicine for national distribution would essentially constitute quasi operation with  private sector focus on services relevant to health care needs.

Accordingly taxes collected from taxpayers allocated to guaranteed health care protect lives substantially reducing present Medicare and Medicaid spending upon amalgamation of auxiliaries under universal care ambit.

Single payer option is the legitimate right of all citizens and protects small businesses along with medium and major corporations from dealing with minimum to optimum commitments towards employees in the exponentially rising health care and pharmaceutical payments adjusted against salaries and wages that could be expended in retail consumption of utilitarian products serving as the economic stimulus.

Although choices for people to explore suitable plan would be a bonus in the national health scheme, the marginalized demography affected in the lack of free health care provisions would primarily gain from federal and state funded medical assistance.

United States budget appropriation directed in public and national interests could produce positive outcome and issues such as social security, health care, education and environment besides job creation deserves due attention with effective policies leading to sustainable progress.

Healthy nation means higher productivity critical for economic growth and long-term prosperity.

Single payer or national health care is an entitlement that could no longer be denied to citizens in a nation that disproportionately misuse tax revenues on destructive cause.

Finally, United States citizens unified stance on universal health care urging Congress to act in recognition of republic will is the cornerstone to bring about the anticipated change improving economic conditions for the struggling class in society.

Peace to all!

Thank you.

Padmini Arhant


















Health Insurance Industry Policy between 2010 -2014 – Impact on the Average American Life

July 10, 2010

By Padmini Arhant

Further to the article published on this website – “Amendments to National Health Care Legislation,” 04/07/2010 under “Health,” category, the predicted Insurance industry practice is taking toll on ‘average’ American lives.

Source: Bay Area News Group July 4, 2010

By Sandy Kleffman – skleffman@bayareanewsgroup.com – Thank you.

“Health Care Nightmare,” – Minor conditions lead to major insurance costs

Ralf Burgert had no idea how costly toenail fungus could be.

The San Rafael resident got rid of the common infection by treating it with the prescription medication Lamsil. But he could not believe the reaction when he applied for a health insurance policy on the individual market a short time later.

Because of the toenail fungus, an insurer informed him, he would be in a higher-risk insurance pool with a 50 percent jump in premiums.

Consumer advocates say they are often perplexed by the minor health issues that can create serious problems for people seeking health insurance. Each company sets its own policies.

People have been rejected for such common conditions as acne and high blood pressure, said Judy Dugan, research director for Consumer Watchdog.

“If you are pregnant, (insurers) will run the other way screaming,” she added.

“They don’t want to insure a baby until they have looked it over to make sure it’s absolutely healthy.”

A Fremont doctor said she was shocked when one insurer rejected her application because of her eczema, seasonal allergies and a brief bout with viral meningitis, despite a full recovery.

At age 45, Angelique Green, chief medical officer of the Tri-City Health Center, considers herself very healthy, with low cholesterol. She has never smoked, and her hobby is hip-hop dancing.

“To say no to somebody and not even try to work with them, that’s just wrong,” she said.
“It was very frustrating.”

Consumer advocates say they want to make sure that insurance companies do not become more aggressive with denials or dramatically hike premiums for those with pre-existing conditions during the next four years.

“The insurers now compete based on their ability to deny (coverage) to anybody who might actually need care,” Wright said.

“That will change, but not in the near term, and that’s a problem we will have to reckon with.
“It’s particularly important to be vigilant between now and 2014,” he said.

“We would like to see that the regulators closely monitor the denial rates for pre-existing conditions and the reasons for the denials.”

Insurance industry representatives call such concerns misguided and say they do not expect any major changes in underwriting policies before 2014.

“We have a competitive market in California, so health plans want people to buy their coverage, and they will charge a competitive price,” said Patrick Johnston, president and CEO of the California Association of Health Plans.

He noted that the insurance industry generally supported eliminating medical underwriting and guaranteeing coverage to applicants, as long as the change came with a government mandate that most people buy insurance.

Pre-existing conditions are not an issue for the 21 million Californians who have group insurance, usually provided through employers, because group plans accept people regardless of their medical histories.

But they can be a big worry for the 2.5 million Californians who buy insurance on the individual market.

California and many other states will soon set up new high-risk pools for those who have found it difficult or impossible to obtain coverage.

California will receive $761 million to fund this new pool, a dramatic increase over the $33 million for the state’s existing high-risk pool. But this money will not cover everyone with pre-existing conditions, and some may find the still-to-be-determined premiums too costly.

As a result, many people with pre-existing conditions are expected to remain in the individual market during the next four years and experience frustrations as they attempt to find coverage, consumer advocates say.

Consumer advocates such as Wright say people with pre-existing health conditions often encounter serious problems in obtaining coverage that hopefully will be resolved in 2014.

“Many people find it bewildering that it’s exactly the people who need coverage who are the ones who cannot get it,”

As more and more people get denied for smaller and smaller medical problems, both the industry and individuals have figured out that this is not sustainable,” he said.

“The system is broken.”

Redwood City resident Terri Mullen agrees. When she experienced work-related stresses in 2008, her doctor suggested she see a therapist and try anti-anxiety medication. Little did she realize the problem this would cause.

When she later applied for an individual insurance plan, a firm told her she would be in a high-risk pool with much higher premiums because the therapy and medication were signs of a serious mental illness.

Now, she says, “I’m not stressed out anymore – I’m mad.’

By Padmini Arhant – Health Care Snags Drags on…

As noted in the cited article, the victims’ experience is precisely the reason for the requirement on the health care reform to be effective immediately rather than in 2014.

Although, the health insurance industry like other Wall Street behemoths dictate their terms and conditions in every legislation to water down the impact, the legislators still hold the key to an effective and meaningful law on every national issue from financial, energy to health care bills.

It’s not surprising to note the insurance industry representatives’ emphasis on ‘the government mandate to buy insurance,’ to enable the industry compliance with respect to pre-existing conditions and coverage offer to applicants.

The problem lies with the insurance industry’s policy against the mandatory subscribers with pre-existing illnesses and affordability factor for comprehensive quality care even in 2014 and thereafter.

Meanwhile, the insurance industry is determined to continue the status quo with coverage denial and placing subscribers under high-risk pool for minor ailments between now and 2014.

Since it’s a life and death matter, those who are declined coverage by the insurers face the worst possible situations as there is no guarantee to their health care access until the health care legislation becomes the law in 2014.

Despite the expected federal funding increase to the states to address the high-risk pool, the amount projected as inadequate to cover the patients with pre-existing illnesses forcing them to deal with the escalating premium costs in the market for individual subscribers.

That’s why the ideal solution to all of these issues would be to amalgamate the existing federal programs such as Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP, VA, COBRA and establish a “Single Payer” system for a “Universal Health Care” made available now to save life.

Nations thrive with healthy population contributing to a productive and prosperous economy.

It’s never too late to enhance the health care law for health care is a necessity and not a privilege.

Thank you.

Padmini Arhant

Popular demand for Universal Health care – Single Payer System

April 29, 2010

By Padmini Arhant

The special interests representing the insurance and the health care industry successfully thwarted the consumer demand for Single Payer System with aggressive lobbying and campaign.

It’s not hard to figure out the reason behind industry opposition to Single Payer system.

Single Payer system is the guaranteed health care for all citizens regardless of personal health and economic status.

With the 24/7 access across the nation, it effectively addresses the opponent’s claims against the ‘Universal Medicare.’

Issues such as waiting period and subsidized quality are eliminated with the promotion of Medicare payments and not cuts to the hospitals and the professionals across the health care spectrum.

Similar to the social security number assigned to every legal resident, the Medicare expansion with a standard Medicare card for 24/7 access at any medical facility is long overdue in the only industrialized nation restricting the provision.

Medicare is an established system in the United States.

Other federal programs that are operating in conjunction with Medicare are highly beneficial to the segments receiving the government administered health care service.

Programs such as Medicaid, CHIP, VA, COBRA along with Medicare are the salvation for the ailing and the unaffordable groups in the society.

Since these services are available only to specific segments, the vast majority are forced to endure the abusive conditions in the private insurance and health care industry.

Consolidation of the current federal programs into a ‘Single Payer system,’ would not only provide universal coverage in real terms but also contain the astronomical costs incurred by the taxpayers in the exclusively privatized national health care.

The irony in a democracy is, the people are expected to cast their votes to their representatives and they are forbidden from seeking the basic human rights like the national health care for their contributions through exorbitant premiums and tax dollars.

Contrarily, the campaigns funded by the relevant industries ensure they more than recover their investment in each candidacy from the local to the highest office on the land.

Otherwise, democracy is up for sale during the elections.

The largest donation recipient usually emerges the victor, and then onwards,

The campaign financiers control the legislative process, leaving the electorate with the actual power, a mere formality.

Citizens’ consciousness to the democracy abduction is devoid of vigor and often distracted by the corporate owned media and other outlets, ever dedicated to spin the facts into the concocted theory in obeisance to the sponsors.

When politics is governed by profit management, the democracy’s voice is silenced with massive propaganda and shenanigans.

As a result, the truth and the public trust are casualties in the so-called free and fair elections and the governance supposedly pledged to transparency and accountability.

Speaking against injustice by itself declared as injustice and condemned in the highest order.

Again, the condemnation varies with the target’s background.

The health care is a classic example where the public plight is subject to the industry and their representatives’ acknowledgment or the lack thereof evidenced in the health care legislation costing in excess of $35 trillion for the period 2010 – 2019 and,

Yet the estimated 34 million remain uninsured until such time.

In addition, the mandatory insurance purchase from the private sector expected to generate revenue in penalties through default by the 4 million struggling households.

Essentially, the electorate granting power through the ballots is rendered powerless in a democracy defined as the government of the people, by the people and for the people.

Changes do not occur voluntarily.

Throughout history, the grass roots movement has been responsible for the paradigm shift in politics, economic and social environment.

Their activism and relentless support has been instrumental in promoting economic and social justice, particularly political freedom in different parts of the world.

Sometimes human apathy is directly related to ‘individualism.’

Personal experience triggers instant reaction than passive exposure.

Health care bill like the other legislations, severely affects every citizen as a subscriber and a taxpayer.

Complacent to the recent legislation by denouncing the factual presentation is oxymoron, notwithstanding narcissism.

Standing with the power is an easier option and commonly displayed in the absence of courage.

Failure to amend the health care bill is declining the popular demand for ‘Universal Medicare,’ through Single Payer system –

The honorable and the best health care policy to end the population misery.

Denial eventually leads to cataclysmic outcome and in the health care matter,

It’s a choice between saving life and adhering to the political convention.

Citizens’ need compromised in the health care bill is a travesty and the inaction to reverse the course reveals the Washington reality.

People must come together and share their passion to restore democracy conspicuously lost in the special interests’ dominant legislative affairs, poignantly the health care reform.

Remember, the health care debacle is like the wildfire known for ravaging the entire habitat.

Reluctance to modify the health care legislation to ‘Universal Medicare with 24/7 access’ is an invitation to a colossal political defeat in the midterm elections.

Rationality never betrays at the crossroads of decision-making.

Thank you.

Padmini Arhant

Health Care Legislation Amendment

April 22, 2010

By Padmini Arhant

As stated earlier in the blogposts – National Health Care legislation – March 29, 2010, Universal Health Care – Single Payer System under ‘Health’ category on April 8, 2010, the certainty regarding premium hikes by the Health insurance industry has prompted the legislators to introduce a bill seeking federal regulation on health rates.

According to “The New York Times”, report dated April 21, 2010

By Robert Pear – Thank you.

Democrats seek federal regulation of health rates

“Senators say they fear insurers will raise premiums.”

Washington – Fearing that health insurance premiums may shoot up in the next few years,

Senate Democrats laid a foundation Tuesday for federal regulation of rates, four weeks after President Barack Obama signed a law intended to rein in soaring health costs.

After a hearing on the issue, the chairman of the Senate health committee, Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, said he intended to move this year on legislation that would “provide an important check on unjustified premiums.”

Harkin praised a bill introduced by Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif, that would give the secretary of health and human services power to review premiums and block “any rate increase found to be unreasonable.”

Under the bill, the federal government could regulate rates in states where state officials did not have “sufficient authority and capability” to do so.

The White House offered a similar proposal in the weeks leading up to approval of the health care legislation last month.

But it was omitted from the final measure, in part for procedural reasons.

Reviving the proposal Tuesday, Harkin said:

“Rate review authority is needed to protect consumers from insurance companies’ jacking up premium simply because they can.”

Under the new health care law, starting in 2014, most Americans will be required to have insurance.

Insurers will have to offer coverage to all applicants and cannot charge higher premiums because of a person’s medical condition or history.

Michael McRaith, director of the Illinois Department of Insurance, told Congress on Tuesday,

“There is a distinct possibility that less responsible companies will raise rates to price out people who are sick or might become sick between now and 2014.”

McRaith said he and the governor of Illinois, Pat Quinn, a Democrat, “unequivocally support state based insurance regulation” because local officials understand local markets.

He endorsed Feinstein’s bill, saying it would “provide an impetus” for states to regulate premiums if they did not already do so.

Karen Ignani, president of America’s Health Insurance Plans, a trade group for insurers, said Congress should let the new law work before piling on additional requirements.

Ignagni said the law imposed new requirements, taxes and fees on health plans, which could further drive up costs.”

Amendment Requirements – By Padmini Arhant

It’s obvious from the news article and the cited blogposts that forewarned the inevitable health insurance premium hikes, especially with the mandatory insurance scheduled to commence in 2014.

Again, as indicated in the blogposts titled – ‘National Health Care legislation,’ “Universal Health Care – Single Payer System,” and per NYT article, the health care amendments are related to the most vulnerable patients subject to higher premiums between now and 2014.

The healthy subscribers may not be affected right now.

However, in the absence of foolproof system for the insurance industry to circumvent the health care laws, the majority will be forced to deal with the prolonged status quo, even after 2014.

Private sectors use the ‘unknown’ market rates for it is determined by demand and supply, to evade compliance on ‘reasonable’ price.

With the mandatory insurance purchase in 2014, the demand will exceed supply providing the insurers a huge opportunity in price management.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s bill is to address that aspect of the problem.

If the bill is aimed at premium caps augmented with the health and human services discretionary power to block the ‘unreasonable’ rates – it is thoughtful but not guaranteed to be obliged by the Health Insurance industry.

Further, any federal assurance to regulate rates upon the states’ failure or inability to do so, is also a welcome change.

Nevertheless, the resistance from the President of America’s Health Insurance Plans, Karen Ignani, representing a trade group of insurers to any new requirements is conspicuous.

Notwithstanding, the assertion to transfer the costs burden to the consumer, the ultimate payee in the retail business.

It’s always possible to modify and manage products and services under self-control, but it’s much harder when it’s designed and delivered by others.

Regardless of the requirements and legislations, the industry that is a dominant force in the health care service would not easily compromise on the disproportionate profit margins attained thus far.

That’s why, the solid protection for the ‘unaffordable’ customers and those in need of ‘urgent’ care, the existing Medicare expansion is recommended.

As such, the patients under these categories are being assisted with the federal funding to enable access to the ‘private for profit’ health care.

Therefore, it eliminates the opposition to the ‘Universal Health Care’ funding.

In fact, when the cost/benefit ratio is evaluated, the Single Payer system is approved by the economists, Congressional Budget Office and the non-partisan groups concerned about the consumer rights and the rising national deficit.

The purpose behind the health care legislation was to rein in costs to the ‘average’ American families struggling to cope with the private industry’s vertical premiums that will persist despite the regulations as confirmed by the President of the America’s Health Insurance Plans, Karen Ignani.

Although, the coverage denial on pre-existing conditions exacerbated with the higher premiums is prohibited, the present and the future subscribers i.e. in 2014, have not been informed with the relevant details, particularly on the quality and the maximum medical expenses for their individual health condition.

There is lot of ambivalence that requires clarification.

The information on the health care law made available to the public with Q&A interface is necessary to dispel the myths around the insurance plans and the unmitigated health care expenses.

Public awareness and complete knowledge of the health care law is essential to prepare the customers financially in the exclusive private health care service.

In addition, per the insurance industry stance against the health care law and any requirements, the consumers are challenged with the uphill battle in terms of unlimited health care access and affordable costs.

Unless the ‘Universal Medicare’ is extended to the vast uninsured, the health insurance and the health care industry would continue to maneuver around the health care legislation.

The health care legislation is a preliminary step towards the specific issues like pre-existing conditions.

Since, the actual benefits to the currently insured and uninsured are still dependent upon the ‘private for profit’ health care policy,

Unequivocally, the Universal Medicare for all with 24/7 access, especially to the ‘federal aid’ recipients is the immediate and permanent solution to the emerging and the long-term health care crisis.

Thank you.

Padmini Arhant

Universal Health Care – The Ideal Remedy

March 4, 2010

By Padmini Arhant

Health care reform has consumed significant time without any consensus on the important national crisis.

The last week bipartisan summit confirmed the status quo.

Now the discussion is held on passing the legislation in different format. Some advocating for piece meal legislation while others believe in the consolidated package approval.

Those who opposed the reform from the beginning remain steadfast in their opposition to saving lives for political and personal interest. The obstinacy speaks volume about their commitment to public service.

The back and forth exchange is counterproductive when an alarming proportion, an estimated 45,000 young and old people are dying every year.

Although, the Senate health care bill without public option is upheld as the ‘adequate’ measure, it continues to be an uphill battle in securing the Senate majority vote.

Despite the public testimonials sharing their harrowing experiences along with the facts on the escalating costs, the universal health care was never an option previously among the ‘Super Majority’ democrats with the exception of few legislators in the House and the Senate.

In 2009, when the democrats were a super majority, they lost a once in a lifetime opportunity to provide the American electorate, the deficit reducing and an affordable health care through universal Medicare.

Not all is lost, since the Democratic members and the administration are forced to consider the reconciliation process – an avenue used by the Republican administration and the members on numerous occasions in the past for the military and the corporate agenda.

However, it’s incumbent on the democratic members to serve the public interest by adopting the Single Payer system, when considering the simple majority rule.

Why is the Universal Medicare, an ideal remedy?

1. It’s simple and cost effective in every sense.

2. The system already exists for seniors via Medicare and the VA health care for the veterans. Further, Medicaid and COBRA are also federal funded programs.

3. Current Medicare coverage to seniors and the Federal funded VA programs are acknowledged as the phenomenal milestone in the national health care, even by the Republican members in the Congress. They appreciate it because they are entitled to the health care privileges as the members of the United States Congress.

4. Therefore, the Medicare expansion for all would resolve the disputed intricacies in the present health care debate.

5. Standard rules on the health care services would effectively address the excessive health care management costs attributed to the rising national debt.

6. Competition among the health care service providers promotes quality including the desirable choices for the insured in seeking the appropriate treatment.

7. Fraud and malpractice could be curtailed under the blanket rule for the industry.

8. Mandatory insurance for all under federal program would ease the burden on the society – the individuals, small businesses and the Corporations. It’s stipulated in the pending legislation, but in the absence of a federal run program the private insurers gain absolute monopoly leading to the ‘business as usual’ environment.

9. Negotiations with the pharmaceutical industry under universal Medicare would also substantially reduce the drug costs. Thus benefiting all.

10. Universal Medicare is a guaranteed protection for it would be available 24/7 regardless of the citizens’ health conditions.

The people of the United States deserve an efficient, cost saving, choice oriented health care system such as the Medicare for all.

Under ‘not-for-profit’ universal health care, otherwise the single payer system, the consumers would invest their premiums in their health rather than the insurance and the health care industry CEO’s wealth.

America should not agree to anything less than a Universal Medicare and it’s legislatively possible through the legitimate reconciliation method, currently decided by the democratic members for passing the unpopular Senate version of the health care bill.

Finally, Healthy People means Wealthy Nation.

Thank you.

Padmini Arhant

Health Care Reform

July 11, 2009

By Padmini Arhant

The U.S. Senate is reviewing the components of the much-required health care reform bill. Obviously, the free market profiteers represented by the Insurance industry, hospitals, healthcare providers, Pharmaceutical companies and the entire enterprise strongly lobbying against the public option involving federal health care. Simultaneously, a tentative agreement by the hospitals and health care providers to reduce Medicare and Medicaid costs by $155 billion over a decade has been subject to immense speculation.

The opposition minority along with the cynics and the skeptics are vigorously contesting the legislation on the pretext – ‘tax’ and ‘fiscal responsibility’, an all time favorite issue.

Since the national health care estimated to cost over trillion dollars, the debate premised on choice, costs, and quality in accordance with President Obama’s primary objective of this crucial legislation.

Therefore, it’s important to address the concerns and criticisms from the respective quarters in all three perspectives.

Choice or Option:

Evidently, the free market’s resistance via lobbyists against the federal health care confirms the unwillingness to compromise on disproportionate profits at national expense and dominance in the national health care desperately due for major overhaul, even though the opposition minority claims satisfaction with the existing system regardless of the exorbitant costs enforcing the ‘average’ millions to remain uninsured and underinsured.

Unequivocally the present health care is fabulous for the privileged few particularly the lawmakers, the corporate executives and the fortunate healthy population with health insurance in reserve for emergencies. Unfortunately, the same system is neither empathetic nor conducive for those with pre-existing illnesses or children in families with congenital medical conditions and millions simply unable to afford the ‘supposedly’ competitive state of the art health care as declared by the opposition.

The reasons offered by the opposition defending the special interests investing millions of dollars in legislative votes to oppose federal health care, do not correlate with the status quo.

Despite the misnomer that current system is inexpensive without federal health care option, the exclusively private sectors run industry unable to offer any affordable insurance for a sizable population urgently in need of health care.

The real explanation being the system superbly efficient at a premium price, cost effective although draining the national economy predominantly profit driven with an utter disregard for the ethics or economics ultimately hurting the core national base, the vulnerable majority.

It’s clear from the defiance to the public option comprising federal health care viewed as a threat to phenomenal profits by the free market saturating the system with higher costs, limited choice and substandard care through the selection and elimination process leading the other competitors to adapt to similar strategy for survival and success.

Such practices and policies have allowed the free market to override harsh realities experienced by the ailing and dying population deeply affected by the ominous system prioritizing profits over public health.

It’s no surprise that the lobbyists are enabling the selective legislators and the media with the ammunition to curb the federal health care option favoring the entire population wellness against the broken system.

Another form of public option with the co-operatives by non-profit private groups or state run system considered an alternative to the federal health care. Again, it’s not a viable course of action to compete effectively with the health care conglomerate specifically given the dismal fiscal crisis like in the state of California. Nevertheless, the irony in the firm stance against government program is intriguing with the acceptance of states’ operation while rejecting the federal management.

The federal health system foes are fostering ideas and strategies doomed to fail in an effort to prevail in the free market monopoly with some legislators seemingly complicit in the agenda not barring the conflict of interest revealed in the latest disturbing news reports against them.

In the ‘choice’ aspect, the legislators must execute the power granted by their constituents to stand for the people against special interests by enacting the federal health care in public option as an integral part of the health care legislation.

Costs or Funding:

Yet another contentious issue creating huge barriers between the people and the profit seekers supported by the partisans is the trillion dollar costs to fund the program. The self-funding proposal aimed at saving costs from the non-functional system replaced with efficient and innovative techniques along with costs reduction by health care industry should facilitate insurance for the uninsured through federal option.

Conventional wisdom and experience dictates that it’s not possible to derive the trillion dollars funding from savings alone without generating payments from accessible sources – as it is the case in the state or national deficit reduction. Hence, President Obama’s proposal to cap deductions on employee health benefits claimed by corporations is a reasonable approach to health care financing.

Further, costs distribution via nominal tax surcharge applied on avenues earning extraordinary income i.e. over $200,000 for individuals and $250,000 for couples, along with employer contribution through a fee or tax based on percentage of worker’s salary to aid health benefits should adequately solve the equation.

It’s necessary to underscore the surtax and employer contribution fee favoring the small business owners with huge savings in providing the necessary health benefits via federal health care to their labor force, a vital capital resource to survive in the competitive cash strapped economy. Something, the free market could have offered in the non-governmental environment instead stayed focused on exploiting the system with mega profits.

Of course, there is going to be outcry with political humor like – nation socialized with ‘Robin Hood’ motto, President Obama please spare us with your “Change” theme as we might all end up asking one another to spare a ‘change’ in the revolutionary health care reform.

Humor apart, the seriousness lies in the lack of robust competition to keep the costs down and provide quality care. Another opposition’s grievance against federal participation deserves attention i.e. legislators perpetually scornful towards anything to do with their own organization viz. government sponsored projects, programs and services, reaction strangely implying self-deprecation of the political power representing the people.

Interestingly though, such entities are surely elected by their constituents i.e. people in a democracy but they swear allegiance to the Corporations funneling money into their campaigns and beyond.

It’s technically a democracy electing officials to protect the interests of the free market triumphant in widening the gap between the haves and the have-nots aside from dragging the nation to insolvency as witnessed in the finance sector and automobile industry.

In the tax issue, the opposition argument targeted at equalization of tax code. What it means is while the corporations claim deductions from health care benefits to their employees, similar tax relief not extended to private individuals presumably forced to purchase health insurance under the impending plan.

Although, the presentation posed as advocating for the people, essentially it helps the Corporations selling insurance in the strictly private run industry by transferring the liability on to the government through tax credit and revolving back to the tax payer funded health insurance only benefiting the profit seeking corporations rather than the taxpayer themselves.

Clearly, there are many opportunities to provide for the long overdue national health care costs and tragically, the legislative matter politicized by the opponents in compliance with the special interests order.

Care/Quality and Quantity:

The major objection from the opposition is the apparent government rationing of the health care and subsequent effects on the quality citing examples such as the Canadian and the British National Health Care system allegedly dysfunctional because of the government engagement with emphasis on the prolonged waiting period having a direct toll on the patients diagnosed for certain medical conditions. In other words, the deterioration in quality linked to the neglect of preventive medicine proven cost effective than treatment care.

The opposition argument might be legitimate; however, it does not transcend reality.

In this context, the Insurance industry dominated free market authored the “pre-existing” illness code apart from emerging as the champion in discounting and dismissal of genuine medical conditions leading to numerous lawsuits and out-of-court settlements. Notably all of them attributed to negligence and excessive insurance company intervention as evidenced in the grueling and agonizing experiences shared by thousands of victims and health care providers through various outlets.

On several occasions, the pro-health care reformers confronted by the anti-reform movement demanding the name of an international system successfully meeting the national requirements in terms of choice, cost and care. In fact, among the many industrialized nations the Scandinavian country Sweden provides excellent national health care from preventive medicine to cure and the achievement made all possible primarily as the world’s highest taxpayers.

Other hypothesis includes the Medicare and Medicaid payments to hospitals escalating beyond the actual costs over the decade calculated on the number or quantity and not the quality. The private groups reflecting the opposition’s sentiments against the federal health care suggested ‘Pay for quality’ in the bill resembling the Obama plan pledged to promote prevention, treatment and cure.

Amidst agreements and fallouts, a common flaw detected in both groups i.e. the federal system consisting federal agencies for approval on minor to major patient care as a stopgap measure to curtail expenses from medical practices shielding itself against malpractice lawsuits and investment recovery on medical equipments through patient insurance. Any form of over-indulgence will drive the costs in this matter.

It’s best for both federal and private health care to remove bureaucracy and intrusion between patients and health care professionals with unnecessary pre-authorizations causing delay in diagnosis and cost increase. Electronic guidelines on standard medical procedures for common illnesses are an ideal cost reduction method.

Finally, as there are many other issues to address in the immediate future, the analysis with solutions in the health care topic concludes strongly recommending federal run health care as a public option competing on even keel with the private sector to accomplish the general mission – universal health coverage guaranteed to heal the frail economy and the suffering citizens.

Thank you.

Padmini Arhant