Friday, May 12, 2017

Healthcare Facts Accidentally Getting Publicity

We're approaching 10 years of public debate on government healthcare policy. Or are we? Debate is usually a process where claims are made and either supported or refuted. Instead, we've had nearly a decade of baseless statements.

Here are two facts that have been in the news lately that should have been publicized years ago: most people don't value healthcare, and some healthcare spending is unnecessary.

Possibly 70% of low-income people don't value health insurance at the cost of its provision. We can save a lot of money by giving uninsured people the cash equivalent of their personal valuations instead of giving them insurance. Why has this never been a component of the public discussion? (I know why, but it's a question worth making sure we all ask ourselves.)

Somewhere around $400 billion is spent every year to mitigate the effects of one lifestyle choice: carbohydrate consumption by those with Type II diabetes. This is like free lung transplants for unreformed smokers. Nihilism has made us think we can't possibly require behavior changes by those receiving public assistance. Annihilism is trying to make us think it is actually a good idea to funnel money to those making self-destructive choices.

It's ridiculous that it's taken nearly 10 years to have these things said aloud, but it's encouraging that they are finally being discussed.

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