This is a continuation of What You Need To Know About Medicare For All, Part I

  1. The real cost of Medicare includes hidden costs imposed on doctors and taxpayers.

Blahous estimates that the administrative cost of private insurance is 13%, more than twice the 6% it costs to administer Medicare. Single-payer advocates often use this type of comparison to argue that universal Medicare would reduce health care costs. But this estimate ignores the hidden costs Medicare shifts to the providers of care, including the enormous amount of paperwork that is required in order to get paid.

Medicare is the vehicle by which the federal government has been trying to force the entire health care system to adopt electronic medical records—a costly change that appears to have done nothing to increase quality or reduce costs, while making it easier for doctors to “up code” and bill the government for more money.

There are also the social costs of collecting taxes to fund Medicare, including the costs of preparation and filing and the costs of avoiding and evading taxation. By some estimates, the social cost of collecting a dollar of taxes can be as high as 25 cents.