Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Single Payer S**t Storm in Massachusetts

Stop the ACLU has a noteworthy post by Warner Todd Huston about Massachusetts' single payer health care system that has unraveled in a few short years. Their set up is a sort of canary in the mine for ObamaCare. The whole thing is well worth reading. I am giving a couple of pertinent quotes below.

" . . . cracks in the system are already being seen. These cracks are instructive as a lesson on how Obamacare will crash and burn just like Romneycare is now in the process of doing.
One of the early claims that helped push Romneycare through to law was the insistence by its supporters that Emergency Room visits would fall as more and more citizens became covered under healthcare insurance. Since ER care is far more expensive than a doctor’s care, it was thought that more people with insurance would ease the overcrowding of ERs as well as lower the overall costs of healthcare.
However, a flaw in this logic has been seen throughout the state. As more people became insured, more people demanded the care of doctors. These doctors became overloaded with patients and waiting lists for doctors got longer and longer. As a result, ERs in Massachusetts have not seen a downturn in visits. On the contrary, it seems that ER visits are actually on the upswing in the Bay State. In fact, in 2007 they were higher than the national average by 20 percent.
"Then there is another problem unaccounted for by the politicians. You see these citizens newly covered were given no reason to worry that the costs at an Emergency Room are higher than just waiting for their doctors to have room on their schedules to see them. So, off to the ER they went. After all, it’s covered!
Additionally, after initial gains in “reducing care barriers and boosting affordability,” the system is showing signs of reverses in areas that were thought to have been “fixed” by Romneycare.
"The percentage of non-elderly adults that claimed they were not getting the care they want initially dipped but as of June of 2009 that success has been reversed back to 2007 levels. The reason? Not enough doctors for the increased demand."
"Simply put the politicians never came clean with the people of Massachusetts about the costs of the plan. All sorts of rosy scenarios were drawn and everyone smiled and backslapped to get these unfunded mandates passed. But now reality is setting in and the system is crashing down around them.
"This is the fate of Obamacare on the national level.
but what do the people of Massachusetts think of Romneycare? Do they like it? After all, it is they that are forced to foot the bill and they who will elect more politicians to either kill or continue the plan.
"According to the Rasmussen polling service, only 26 percent of Bay Staters think Romneycare is a success. Worse, only 10 percent think that their care has improved while a hefty 53 percent say they’ve seen no change in their own healthcare."

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