Free Market Alternative to ObamaCare

On 7/17, Steve from Dayton and I had a good exchange.  At one point he asked me if I had a better idea to fix health care than Obamacare.  You can listen to the call by clicking the play button above.

Here’s the beginning of a Capitalist/Free Market solution to helping those that need health insurance but can’t afford it.  It’s certainly not a complete plan, but could be a good place to start.

1. The free market only works when the consumer and the provider  agree to a fair value for value exchange. Currently medical consumers have an unrealisticly low expectation of medical costs hidden behind a relatively small co-pay for a doctors services.  On the other hand, doctors have an unrealistically high expectation of what consumers are willing to pay or can afford because insurance for everyday medical procedures covers the difference between the co-pay and the doctors fee.  Consumers and health care providers must be reconnected economically.  Even if PPO type plans continue for everyday medical expenses, we will need a mechanism for informing the consumer of the costs of procedures and doctors of what consumers are willing to pay and can afford.   It’s necessary to reset the cost structure of the entire system.

2.  Insurance regulations will be stripped down to the following.  All policies must be written in language any high school graduate can understand.  Coverage and limits must be clearly explained.  Premiums, co-pays, deductibles and exclusions must be clearly defined.  Any insurance company found to be using fraud or deception to deny or delay a valid claim will make the policyholder whole and pay a hefty (TBD) fine.

3. A privately run, non-profit medical insurance fund will be established to provide medical insurance for the truly needy.  Need will be OBJECTIVELY evaluated by the privately run charity administering the fund.  All fines paid by insurance companies will be delivered to this fund.

4. Health care professionals, hospitals and pharma will receive tax breaks for providing services, products and funding to the new privately run health care charity fund.

5. Private individuals who want to donate time or funds to the new charity fund will also receive a tax incentive for their generosity.

6. Some of the money in this fund could be used for education loans for doctors and nurses.  Upon graduation these new medical professionals will  repay their loan by giving a portion of their time to the people served by the fund.

Connecting consumers with providers will begin to bring health care costs down for everyone.  American’s always respond to private need with great heart and generosity, think Haiti. Private charities always out perform government programs in delivering more value with less resources. Many doctors and nurses are already driven to help others, giving them an easy road to help will allow them to make a living and volunteer too.  Helping young doctors and nurses with student loans and allowing them to pay it back with service will help expand the number of health care professionals across the country and reinforce the calling to help others in these new doctors and nurses.

Most of all, this program, while just a wild hair and certainly only a start to fixing the problems we face, would not enslave one group of people to another nor would it create debt that will destroy the future of our children and grandchildren.    It is based on true capitalism, the freedom to choose and a belief in the basic goodness of people and Americans in particular.


About Larry Downes

Son, brother, husband, father, boss, mentor & friend. Believer in unfettered personal liberty. Occasional host on 93.1 WIBC in Indianapolis.

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