A few quickies 1: Single payer rears its head, again!

A few quickies 1: Single payer rears its head, again!

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Well Steffie and David are back on the single payer war-path, with an article in August 13 JAMA. While most of us in the real world agree with Ian Morrison that single-payer is "culturally unavailable" to Americans, Woolhandler and Himmelstein have been arguing for it officially since 1989.  The AMA continues to claim that it is in favor of universal coverage, but remembering back to 1994, they were among the first to help torpedo the Clinton plan —  not that Hillarycare was single payer as Canadians, Brits or even Germans know it. However, I remember doing focus groups of doctors in the mid-1990s when you could not get them to shut up about MSAs as the solution to all their problems — ‘Just let the patients pay cash and we’ll be fine’. Both the doctors and the pharma companies are starting to reap what they ideolgoically sowed back then, because as we  all know consumers think health care should be free. And, as the health care industry discovered after 1965 you’re better off having third parties paying. (More to come on this when I finally unload on Medicare drug coveage…)

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