There have been several opinion pieces in the Albuquerque Journal recently on the issue of health care (such as this one from New Mexico Sen. Jeff Bingaman or this one). That is why it was so refreshing to see this article in today’s paper from a doctor who explains why nationalized health care is doomed to failure.
Writes Dr. Torre Near:
We, as individuals, can do more to improve our lives, but the way the current system is set-up, we have no incentive. The person who exercises every day, is in the normal weight range, doesn’t smoke, has less than two drinks a day and sees a doctor once every two years pays the same as the person who is fat, smokes, drinks, (who’s) exercise is working the remote and (who) sees the doctor every two weeks and is in the ER four times a year.
It doesn’t make sense. We have to change the system, and a national health care plan won’t do that. There have to be incentives to be healthy, just like there are incentives in car insurance to buy a lower cost car, avoid tickets and stay out of accidents.
While the specifics recommended by Dr. Near are somewhat lacking in specifics, there are plenty of ideas in New Mexico and nationally. Hopefully, Congress will kill proposals for government-run or socialized health care and then focus on recommendations that increase individual freedom and personal responsibility in health care.