The Government Health Care System
By Arnold Kling
Medicare is wonderful for relieving the elderly from the burden of worrying about health care expenses. By the same token, it is wonderful for relieving doctors of the burden of worrying about the elderly as customers. You get paid for understanding the billing system, not for understanding your patients.
State and local governments do their part to harm our health care system. Licensing regulations serve to entrench and protect the specialist system and fragmented health care. In other industries, business owners decide how to train their employees to do their jobs. Competition leads firms to adopt training methods that foster customer satisfaction. In health care, training methods are dictated by government licensing boards, and they foster high prices and inefficient staffing.
The essay is based on observations of my father’s medical care.
Barack Obama says that his mother was more worried about her medical bills than her care. We can relieve people of the worries about paying their medical bills. But only at the cost of entrenched mediocrity in medical care.
The real health care reformers, as Grace-Marie Turner points out, are those who propose giving more power to consumers, instead of bureaucrats at insurance companies and Medicare.