Be careful what you wish for. This cuts both ways.
The incidental economist notes: (Austin Frakt)
If one wants to address the problems in health insurance markets and/or to get providers to accept payment reforms, the mandate–or something like it–is the political price. Yes, it’s about money. What else?
Put it this way, if one wants to retain a private market-based health insurance system (which ours largely is), it takes a mandate. Reject the mandate without replacement with a similar mechanism and the whole thing unravels, not just as a matter of health economics (adverse selection) but as a matter of politics.
Medicynical Note: We’ve created the most dysfuntional, expensive healthcare non-system in the world. Yes we’re number one.
Employer sponsored health care is a mess. Employers don’t have to provide their employees health care–in many instances they can’t afford to provide it; “contractors” are not employees and don’t qualify for employer provided benefits; if you get sick and can’t work, you lose your insurance. Remarkable.
Our health care costs are twice that of many other industrialized countries and thousands more per capita/year. We have 50 million uninsured and have a “system” that encourages “free” use of the most inefficient, most expensive health care provider in the country–emergency rooms.
We all pay.