Monday, September 14, 2009

Obama's Healthcare Plan

I am doing my best to keep up with American politics during my travels.

Here is President Obama's speech to congress last week if you missed it.

I recently read an article in the the Wall Street Journal entitled "Fact-Checking the President on Health Insurance" (here). It picks apart a few of the claims Obama makes in his speech.

An article I really enjoyed reading is "5 Myths About Health Care Around the World" in the Washington Post(here). As there are several nations that have already gone the route of public health care, I think it would be wise to review how things are working for them and adjust our actions accordingly. Here's my favorite paragraph:

In many ways, foreign health-care models are not really "foreign" to America, because our crazy-quilt health-care system uses elements of all of them. For Native Americans or veterans, we're Britain: The government provides health care, funding it through general taxes, and patients get no bills. For people who get insurance through their jobs, we're Germany: Premiums are split between workers and employers, and private insurance plans pay private doctors and hospitals. For people over 65, we're Canada: Everyone pays premiums for an insurance plan run by the government, and the public plan pays private doctors and hospitals according to a set fee schedule. And for the tens of millions without insurance coverage, we're Burundi or Burma: In the world's poor nations, sick people pay out of pocket for medical care; those who can't pay stay sick or die.

Is the United States on the verge of something great that will improve the health of our country, or another inefficient government policy that will force us to shoulder an ever greater tax burden? What do you think?