Recent stories on an increase in the number of Americans without health insurance prompted a couple of essays on health insurance reform.

Ronald Bailey writes,

One way to increase the number of insured Americans is to break the link between a job and a health insurance policy.

I also have an essay that argues against the focus on third-party provision of health insurance.

The fundamental problem is that we believe that health insurance is something that only should be received as a gift — never obtained for oneself. Thus, we immediately assume that when a family does not have health insurance, they are to be pitied for not having received the gift, rather than being blamed for not having taken responsibility.

UPDATE: See also the Greg Blankenship’s post on a column in the Chicago Tribune.

For Discussion. In the essay, I argue for mandatory catastrophic health insurance. In what ways would this alleviate the “pre-existing condition” issue with today’s system, and in what ways would “pre-existing conditions” pose a challenge to a system of mandatory catastrophic coverage?