This year is the 50th anniversary of Medicare and Medicaid. Its a perfect time, therefore, to evaluate what these two programs have done and what they havent done.
For starters, we know that the creation of these programs marked a turning in point in health care inflation. Prior to 1965, health care spending bore a reasonable relationship to national income. People didnt generally talk about its being unaffordable and a great many people avoided health insurance altogetherchoosing to pay medical bills out of pocket instead.
For the past 50 years, however, real per capita heath care spending has been growing at twice the rate of growth of real per capita income. As a result, health care spending crowds out more and more of other consumption with each passing day.
|John C. Goodman is a Senior Fellow at the Independent Institute, President of the Goodman Institute for Public Policy Research, and author of the widely acclaimed Independent books, A Better Choice: Healthcare Solutions for America, and the award-winning, Priceless: Curing the Healthcare Crisis. The Wall Street Journal and the National Journal, among other media, have called him the Father of Health Savings Accounts.|
Obamacare remains highly controversial and faces ongoing legal and political challenges. Polls show that by a large margin Americans remain opposed to the healthcare law and seek to repeal and replace it. However, the question is: Replace it with what?