Thursday, May 28, 2009

I won't hold my breath

The problems with the health care industry will be fixed soon, because some local political "leaders" met with industry groups in Annapolis to discuss how to fix the problems in the health care biz. Peter Beilenson assures us that this is not just a "bellyaching session", he wants to actually do something.

The 92participants voted on a range of possible solutions, including a state-financed tuition program for medical students who choose primary care and agree to practice in Maryland for a minimum period of time, and tax deductions or bonuses to doctors who work in underserved areas or with uninsured patients. They also discussed how medical practices could band together in larger groups to provide leverage against insurance companies, and a requirement that insurance pay the same amount to every doctor for similar treatments.

"We don't want this to be just a bellyaching session," Beilenson said. "We want to do something about it."

If government regulation worked, health care would be a model industry. The reason it sucks is because there is too much government in health care already. The supply of doctors is regulated, ways in which they can structure their practices are regulated (i.e. Boutique plans classified as insurance), medicines are regulated by the FDA, etc. Couple that with a problem of many people believing that health care should be free or steeply subsidized, and we have disaster.

Chop, chop, political figures. Use legislation to arrange us like chess pieces to solve problems. I'm sure it will work this time.