It hurts the economy when a person of limited necessary means has to quit a job in order to qualify for indigent care. Out went the bath water, and the baby. How does the economy improve when a worker has to call out sick every other day or week?6 Either way, corporations and small businesses pay a lot more for inefficiency and non-productivity by the spread of illnesses to other employees than they could ever pay for positive health insurance programs or premiums. Those who say “healthcare reform could cripple the system”5 easily overlook the fact that the healthcare system is already severely crippled. Now, rather than hit directly at healthcare reform, those who oppose it have attacked a piece of the legislation, on grounds of “constitutionality” the mandate that penalties of some kind be imposed if a person is found without coverage. There is no authoritative or statistical data to support this notion, and it certainly forces the hand of reform to cover those who can't afford it. However, it's not hard to make a case that the same state that sues on a small legislative 'tick' apparently value cars over healthcare. Most states now require drivers to have automobile coverage by law, which is just as 'unconstitutional'. Some will be inclined to say those laws apply only to drivers, not to everyone; but that's overstating the obvious. How does anyone quantify that argument in terms of “sick people only” when everyone gets sick or injured at some point and time in life, and more than once; a lot more often than they'd ever have car accidents. It is redundant to go there. Given that ideology, that it is far more important to legally require healthcare coverage than for states to...
The paper outlines three talking points that are used to make everuthing clear. Current talk about budget caps and excessive spending overlook and easily dismiss the obvious. It costs America seven to ten times more to have millions of people without health coverage for which all people pay, on the front end, or the back. Point 1: The use of emergency rooms for non-emergency doctor's office visits. At five to ten times the cost of a doctor's visit, a hospital is open to interpret whatever are the costs of services and the prices they want to write off at their tax filing year-end. Every write-off is a loss to tax revenue, so an emergency room visit at $1,500-$3,000 a pop on the back end is far more expensive than a $150-$300 doctor's office visit for a covered service on the front end.
Point 2: While those who oppose healthcare reform use 'the poor' as whipping posts for “excessive spending,” the truth is that the poor are already covered. That's why spending is out of control. Those who don't have Medicare/Medicaid (controlled costs), or some kind of state coverage, are automatically covered under “indigent care” (uncontrolled costs). The truth is that if they were covered, the economic factors of cost and pricing would be controlled. The main purpose of healthcare coverage is to support working taxpayers who can't afford insurance premiums and do not qualify for 'poor people's' coverage because they have a job.
Point 3: As the quality and availability of healthcare goes down, so does the quality of America's health.