Polling has shown a dramatic increase in support for Medicare-for-All. I support that. However, what does that mean? How do we get there from here? Very importantly, how is it paid for? Sarah Kliff and Dylan Scott write this article for Vox comparing the various plans being debated:
We read Democrats’ 8 plans for universal health care. Here’s how they work.
Any plan, even one with overwhelming public support, is going to run into a political buzzsaw as moneyed special interests fight change at any cost.
The simplest way to get to Universal Health Care is to lower the starting age of Medicare to 0 and raise the Medicare tax correspondingly. Private insurance companies would shift their business models into selling supplementary health insurance or other products.
A more gradual approach to get to universal health care is to allow people under 65 to voluntarily buy into Medicare or Medicaid as a public health insurance option. One are of disagreement — employer based health insurance, and whether or not we should still keep it as a model. Our international competitors, of course, do not put the financial burden of providing health insurance on their businesses. Severing the link between employment and health insurance is probably the smart way to go, but it would bring change, and change can be politically problematic.
If you believe the solution for more affordable and universal access to health care and health insurance is to get government completely out of it and let the “free market” do its magic, and you completely missed the colossal market failures that left tens of millions of uninsured and unable to access the health care system before the Affordable Care Act, this probably isn’t the article or the blog for you.