Many lawmakers on both sides of the aisle agree universal health insurance is the central goal of successful healthcare reform. The left sold the Affordable Care Act on this promise; the right hopes to do the same with an alternative plan set to be unveiled later this year.
Both sides are trying to fix the wrong problem. Universal health insurance is profoundly different from better healthcare, and so long as reformers focus on the former, the latter will continue to deteriorate.
Real healthcare reform must improve the quality of America’s healthcare system. At its most fundamental level, healthcare exists to improve individuals’ health outcomes and overall well-being. Beneficial reforms will thus improve those outcomes, increase healthcare’s quality and lower its costs, with the ancillary effect of expanding its availability….
[R]eforms that seek universal health insurance decrease healthcare’s quality, and they don’t deliver on their promise to make coverage universal.
Look no further than ObamaCare for proof. The Rand Corporation estimates that only one-third of the exchanges’ enrollees were previously uninsured. A recent poll by the Kaiser Family Foundation found that 50 percent of the uninsured don’t plan to buy health insurance. Most damningly, the Congressional Budget Office now estimates that 31 million Americans will still be uninsured in 10 years.