Lowering the age for Medicare and raising the age of SCHIP will provide the single-payer lovers with exactly what they want-unified, government run healthcare that will break what is left of America. It is impossible to understand how putting more people into a system that is already unsustainable is a good idea. There are no lower payments and fee schedules to be implemented. Hospitals are already losing millions on their government programs. Even the much hailed Mayo Clinic sees these changes as nothing but the complete and utter failure they are. After losing a reported $840 million to Medicare, more cuts do not appeal to them.
The deal, which emerged late Tuesday night after days of secret negotiations, would eliminate the new government-run insurance plan that many liberals had seen as the linchpin of meaningful reform.
But paradoxically, what lies at the heart of the promise may be a more durable, if initially smaller, form of the public option: an expansion of Medicare, the huge federal health insurance program for seniors, to include millions of Americans ages 55 through 64.
Never mind that Medicare has done nothing to control the costs of medical care:
Myth #1: Medicare has reduced seniors' out-of-pocket costs.Removing the public option and replacing it with the false utopia of stuffing everyone into Medicare is not the answer either. The Democrats have to realize the thirst for power cannot come at the expense of reality. There will be nothing left to control if the country collapses under the weight of single-payer disguised as expansion. If we have been ineffective up to now, how will we possibly be better with millions more in the system, many of whom will not be paying their own way.
Fact: In 1965, the Medicare program was sold to the American people as the best way to help reduce seniors' out-of-pocket health care costs. Yet after it was created, costs skyrocketed and by 1985, Rep. Claude Pepper (Dem.-FL) reported that Medicare beneficiaries were paying 20 percent of their income for health care, the same as in 1964--the year before Medicare was passed.3 Seniors end up paying more for health care when costs skyrocket under a government-financed monopoly for medical care. All told, seniors' out-of-pocket health care costs have gown from $4.5 billion in 1977 to over $26 billion today.
True reform can be had. There are improvements to be made in access for those with pre-existing conditions and the unemployed or under-employed. Shattering the backs of the middle class to pay for it, while adding additional bodies to the bursting Medicare roles will do nothing to improve care or control costs.