Tuesday, when it was obvious to informed insiders that Brown would win in Massachusetts the word got out quickly. Sometime in mid-day I learned that health stocks were all rising. Health investors were smelling the defeat of health legislation. For the health business the status quo is victory. But, it is not a victory for the rest of us.
The comprehensive health bills now in conference should be defeated. But, health care reform should be pressed more vigorously than ever.
I would like to see Congress and the administration focus on attending to the known defects of our current health care system. Deal with the vast police work and all the repairs that have accumulated for a long time. There is such a long list. I think it is reasonably accurate to say most people associated with health service is over compensated. This includes hospitals, insurance companies, and down to providers such as physicians and various specialist. Procedures, should not be billed at such extraordinary costs as we see on every statement we receive from a medical service. It just can’t be justified.
The high cost of services come about as a result of prevailing monopolistic conditions. Congress should concentrate on breaking up monopolies and give the market a chance to control costs. Of course, this is a big battle. Health providers like their monopoly, and are likely to pull out all the stops to keep the status quo. To be effective you can’t side swipe cost containment. That is why independent analysis and think tanks have been so critical of cost provisions in the current legislation.
I know wider health coverage is very important and desirable. But, if we could reduce the abuses in the system we could get a better read on who cannot afford health care.
The health care mess should be cleaned up incrementally without a pause. Then, Congress could possibly find more than 31% of Americans approve what they are trying to do, each step of the way.
The people and their representatives need to let the health care industry know that the status quo is unacceptable. If so, maybe health care investors should be more vigilant.