Why Health Care Is So Expensive

On July 20, I wrote about the U.S. health care system that “…there’s something cold and wrong with ‘good luck, this is America, you’re on your own’ to pay $500 for a bottle of medicine that’s sold for $5 elsewhere. What’s un-American is a caste system that offers health care to some, but not others; a slap in the face of the once self-evident truth that all are created equal.”

Rich in Lima, Ohio replied:

You are misreading “self-evident truth that all are created equal.” This simply meant no one should be entitled to be king by right of birth. Our forefathers never intended nor thought possible equality of life. Equality and happiness were not guaranteed as a right in the Constitution; only the freedom to pursue them was guaranteed.

No matter what ism, there will always be those who get better doctors, better treatment, and the best technology available. If you want the best health care here in the USA, become President.

The only problem with health care here in the USA is the socialism already mandated by the federal government. And, I believe you will find the reason for the $5 prescription is because we are with our $500 prescription subsidizing the socialist health care system.

The Constitution just might be the most well thought out document ever written. I firmly believe the genius found in those few pages will never be equaled.

Sadly, it was annulled by the founders’ descendants with what was supposed to be a temporary federal income tax for the funding of WWI. It is still with us 90 years hence. A review of history will show the Constitution was read with original intent until that time.

With this new found power of the purse, it became convenient for politicians to argue and expand the meaning of the Constitution for the sole purpose of satisfying their desires and the wants and wishes of their favorite constituents. Thus, we now have cradle-to-grave politicians.

Our forefathers not only feared such a centralized government but they feared any large institution with unchecked power. They would be the first to nix the idea of a federalized education system, a federalized health care system, etc. They intentionally saw the role of the federal government as very limited and via the Constitution tried to assure it remained limited.

Their genius was knowing a free people and a free market system would in itself — with no directed funding or mandates from a government — make the best use of resources in the most efficient manner.

Bottom line: there was no problem with health care here in the USA until politicians mandated there be a problem. Doctors in all communities charged according to the means of the patient, and a majority of the hospitals were non-profit institutions to which the wealthy contributed money for lavish buildings and the latest technology (provided a plaque was attached with their name).

Brent in California agrees:

The more the government is involved, the less we have to be involved with one another. Lose your job? The government has your check. Need daycare? Ask Uncle Sam. Hollywood elites and their ilk are nearly all lefties because it assuages their guilt. Power to the government liberates them from having to get personally involved.

The Founding Fathers knew full well the evils of government. The Bill of Rights, in fact, was never meant to have any sway over state and local governments. None. It was entirely aimed at the Federal Government. They knew well the corrupting influence of power and wanted power over our lives to be as close to the governed as possible.

The health care system could be healed by getting lawyers out of the system, by reducing governmental involvement to the absolute minimum, and by ending illegal entry to the country. What’s happened is that the government has broken both our legs and is now offering a wheelchair. If we take it, we will never walk again.

Chiropractor Robert J. Manna in Rome, Georgia has some ideas on why health care in America is so expensive:

There are more pharmaceutical lobbyists in Washington than there are Congresspersons. These Big Pharma companies have tons of money to contribute to the campaigns of our elected officials.

If you put all the 100,000 pharmaceutical reps in the United States in one place, they’d make a medium-sized city. Their job is to influence the prescription writing habits of medical doctors by “educating” them while supplying them and their staffs lunches (and pens, and pads of paper, and other office supplies) for free.

One of three commercials on TV in the U.S. is a drug ad.

This country has well trained doctors, and takes more medications than anyone, yet we rank 37th among industrialized countries in health care. Why? Because we focus on sickness instead of health. The system is geared towards pouring vasts sums of money into crisis care, and very little into prevention and true health care.

Nearly a quarter of the Medicare budget is for diabetes, a disease that is often preventable and manageable through diet and lifestyle changes, especially “early” changes (when folks are younger).

Half of the bankruptcies in the United States are due to medical bills.

That’s quite a claim at the end, and I decided to verify before running it. You know what? He’s right.

The story broke in February 2005 when a study came out of Harvard. The Associated Press reported, “Costly illnesses trigger about half of all personal bankruptcies, and most of those who go bankrupt because of medical problems have health insurance, according to findings from a Harvard University study to be released Wednesday. . . . ‘Unless you’re Bill Gates, you’re just one serious illness away from bankruptcy,” said Dr. David Himmelstein, the study’s lead author and an associate professor of medicine. ‘Most of the medically bankrupt were average Americans who happened to get sick.'” I found the story archived at MSNBC.

Whether you think America needs socialized medicine or that the socialization of America’s medicine is what brought us here, the bottom line is that it’s downright hard to pay the bottom line.

Don’t smoke, exercise three times a week, eat a carrot now and then, and hope that you did all right in the genetic dice roll.

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