Rule Number 1 Defining affordable health care

The following is from The Health Care Blog

Rule 1 A health care reform bill needs to guarantee that no one should find themselves unable to get care simply because they cannot afford it. Neither should anyone find themselves financially compromised (or worse) because they have received care.

Those statements are hard to disagree with.  To sum it up I believe they say health care should be affordable, a rallying cry for health care reformers since the beginning.  The problem is in my mind how you approach this goal.  The focus in the current reform effort has been to force insurance companies to lower their premiums through edict or “competition,” to subsidize the cost of insurance and to lower out of pocket costs in some areas such as routine services.

Just follow my directions

Aren’t we approaching all this from the wrong direction?   If I can’t afford something that costs $100 and that cost increases at 10% per year, how does a subsidy of 50% solve the problem if both the $50 I pay and the $50 someone else pays continue to escalate at 10% per year? In five years the total cost has still reached $161.05.

Despite the rhetoric, there is nothing of value in all the health care reform that will either lower that $100 or lower the 10% annual increase in the above example.  We have, in reality defined Rule 1 as entitlement to health care regardless of cost and regardless of who pays that cost.   Big mistake.

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