Bad Assumption

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader was visiting with the Smallholder a few weeks ago. During the visit the subject of nationalized health care came up. The Smallholder made a point that your Maximum Leader has now heard at least twice more from others in discussion.

As it stands, there are bureaucrats in the health care process. They exist in private insurance companies, hospitals, and other for-profit health care providers. For the private insurers the job of the bureaucrats is to enforce policy and keep down costs to maximize profits.

Your Maximum Leader is not disputing this point here. But this is where the comments by Smallholder and others come into play… Their point is this: If there are already bureaucrats involved in the healthcare process; then why not eliminate the maximize profit part of the equation and have a bureaucrat who will be more responsive to the needs of the patient.

Your Maximum Leader more clearly articulated his objection to this premise today than he has before. So he will post it here. The problem with the premise being put forth here is that the government bureaucrat will in fact be more responsive to the needs of the patients. The assumption is that the current functionary’s job is to deny (needed) procedures in the interests of maknig more money for the company. Why does one assume that a government functionary will approve procedures differently? Regardless of who is running the program the job of the bureaucrat is to enforce rules and contain costs. The government will have to maintain a budget for healthcare. (One presumes…) It can’t just approve any procedure for anyone at any time. Additionally, there will be rules (as there already are in Medicare and Medicaid as well as in the private sector) to be enforced. The rules will state what procedures will be covered at what time. It is wrong to assume that the rules will be more favorable to patients than those extant today.

It is an assumption many people make… And it is a wrongly reasoned one.

Oh… You should also check out FLG’s post on power and the left in the context of health care.

Carry on.

1 Comment »

Actually, I’ll give you great reasoning. The surest way for any government department to get a larger budget next year is to overspend their budget this year, regardless of profitability.

Taking the assumption that you have, it is incumbent upon you to demonstrate how a National Health Care Service would be any different than, say, the Pentagon, which famously was paying $400 per toliet seat.

As to rules and procedures, those are written by politicians, who generally would very much like to be re-elected. Any study of the Bush years is instructive as to how this works.

Yet somehow Canada will be the bad guy. I can just feel it.

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