Saturday, September 5, 2015
Exposing the Lies & Myths About Single Payer Health Care
One immense challenge for Bernie Sanders is to get beyond the Noisy 'Wurlitzer' of the corrupt, corporate mainstream media (MSM) to educate citizens on the benefits of the single payer health care system. This is a formidable hurdle given the MSM is already guilty of distorting his democratic socialist message - when they do deign to attend to his campaign - as well as selectively omitting key parts of it. All this is to brainwash Americans against it.
Single payer is an important element for Sen. Bernie Sanders' platform under the aegis of "Medicare for all". The problem is that too many American know next to nothing of its benefits and how it would strengthen our health care system while lowering costs. It would basically take the existing successful Medicare system, strengthen it and extend it to all Americans. Thus, we would see:
- From birth everyone, every American citizen, will be insured and have access to any doctor or hospital in the country no matter the size of their bank account. (Unlike today when a private insurance corporations dictates which doctor you can see.)
- Unlike today when a high deductible or lack of coverage prevents it, people will be able to see a doctor when they first become ill. This will save on much larger costs down the road when conditions worsen.
- Prescription drug prices will be cut by as much as 40 percent simply by repealing a federal law that prevents Medicare from competitive bidding for lowest drug prices.
But make no mistake that 'Medicare for all' would be the for profit industry's biggest nightmare because they'd no longer be able to reap profits by invoking medical loss ratios - preventing sick people from getting care instead of delivering it. Hence, they and their political lackeys and extremists will be prepared to fight like junkyard dogs to prevent it, including the perverse use of propaganda.
Included in that propaganda are assorted myths and lies. Some of the primary ones I deal with below:
Myth: Obamacare already provides universal coverage so we don't need single payer
Fact: Under Obamacare people are required to purchase coverage from a for profit insurance company. Meanwhile, 54m Americans still lack access to health care.
Myth: Single payer is government run health care.
Fact: No, that would be the Veterans Administration system. Under single payer you get a health ID card and can see any doctor or go to any hospital in the U.S. Doctors are NOT employees of the government and hospitals remain in private hands.
Myth: Single payer will lead to rationing like in Canada:
Fact: No, because right now in the U.S. it is PRIVATE health insurance which rations care by using medical loss ratio calculations to determine how much care must be disallowed to earn x % profit
Myth: Costs will skyrocket under single payer.
Fact: By eliminating the for profit system we can save $350 b a year or more in administrative costs.
Myth: Drugs will be more costly and difficult to get under single payer.
Fact: Drugs will be cheaper because single payer will be able to bargain for lowest prices - like the VA does.
All of these points show that too many Americans have been fed a bill of goods about single payer, and we call such tactics propaganda.
It is time to start rationally responding every time the term "single payer" surfaces in discussions and debates and opponents yelp 'Socialism!' or go bankers. We all need to begin to think rationally about how we can make our system much better by adopting it, and also rigorously arguing against the assorted spurious attacks by media know - nothings, their lackeys and the pro-capitalist exploiters.