For 50 years Medicare has been providing quality health care. It is time to expand Medicare to cover all Americans.
To do this we need to make four reforms:
(1) Repeal the Affordable Care Act. The resources devoted to paying for the Affordable Care Act can be reallocated to expanding Medicare.
(2) Reform the Department of Education. Federally guaranteed student assistance should encourage students to pursue higher education in health care. Federal funds to States should expand the number of graduate programs offering MDs or other health care related degrees. These reforms will increase the supply of health care professionals. Increased supply will drive down health care costs.
(3) Reform Social Security to eliminate direct payments to individuals for Social Security Disability and survivors benefits. The expansion of Medicare will eliminate the need for these benefits. The cost savings can be reallocated to expanding Medicare.
(4) Reform the tax code to eliminate tax advantages for purchasing health benefits from private insurance companies. The expansion of Medicare and the elimination of tax advantages will allow the substantial resources now being wasted on the insurance industry to flow directly into the provision of health care.
The Medicare fee structure should provide adequate incentive for providers to participate in Medicare. Patients will participate because of the cost savings.
Individuals should be given the opportunity to opt out of Medicare. Patients can opt out by choosing to pay for a service. Providers should be allowed to provide services in addition to the services provided to Medicare recipients. There should be substantial tax consequences attached to the provision of services outside the Medicare system.
Expanding Medicare to cover all Americans will:
(1) Provide quality health care for every American.
(2) Promote growth by eliminating the biggest barrier that entrepreneurs face when deciding to start a business.
(3) Allow resources that are now being wasted on fraud, insurance, and lawyers to be redirected to providing care.