There is certainly a lot of debate and conflict surrounding health care reform. I think we really need need four kinds of reform:
(1) We need medial malpractice reform (also known as tort reform) which will reduce the cost of medical care significantly. The powerful trial lawyers (also known as ambulance chasers) are successfully fighting this because reform will mean loss of revenue for them. Forget the good of the public – just keep that money rolling in!
(2) We need medical insurance reform to eliminate bad practices on the part of insurance companies. These bad practices including dropping people who are sick and not covering pre-existing conditions.
(3) We need employer reform. Many employers hire people on a part-time basis so as to avoid providing them benefits, including health insurance. This country has a large number of under-employed people who aren’t able to earn as much as they would like and aren’t covered by health insurance. I don’t know this for sure, but I’ve heard most Walmart employees are not full time. I know it is a common practice in the retail industry.
(4) Finally we need coverage for people who can’t otherwise get health care insurance, the so called “government option.” I don’t know how that should be done so as to avoid unintended consequences, but I suspect if we did the first three things I listed above right, the fourth thing should work. The bottom line is that we shouldn’t have so many uninsured in a country such as ours. It is inhumane and unjust.
One comment about these town hall meetings and those who are saying we shouldn’t have and/or we don’t need reform. These are people who have adequate coverage, and seem to be unwilling to allow others to have coverage. For those who say the government can’t do health coverage, just look at what government employees get and look at Medicare. While Medicare isn’t perfect, most of the elderly think it is good coverage.