The U.S. remains one of the only countries that does not offer universal healthcare, and the political debate around the future healthcare plan of the U.S. has been widely debated and publicized. Although the American Health Care Act of 2017 failed, many are still not happy with the Affordable Care Act, proving that finding an alternative solution is not easy. One highly debated concept associated with this continuous healthcare discussion is the notion of single-payer healthcare. In light of failure to repeal or replace the current healthcare system, SERMO physicians considered the single-payer system and the pros and cons of medicare.
While many have been promoting the potential benefits of the single-payer system, some doctors are concerned with the costs of single payer. Those against discourage entitlement programs as well as enacting a system that they view as, overall, unrealistic. SERMO physicians against a single-payer system said:
“Medicare for all or national health service with a private tier for the wealthy. Almost anything would be better than the current disaster.” – Psychiatry
“[We] simply cannot afford Medicare for all. Not in its current form. Rather, we’ll see Medicaid for all, relatively soon.” – General Surgery
“The idea that Medicaid should be free and Medicare should be nearly free (ie: copays, co insurance, deductibles etc) is insanity.” –Obstetrics & Gynocology
However, the opposing group in support for a single-payer system argues that the hypothetical single-payer structure would create health care equality and increase affordability and accessibility to all. Some think that the US is behind by not having single payer:
“Basic healthcare for all. Government does not have to pay for futile care.“ –Hospital Medicine
“The US already spends more tax dollars per capita on healthcare than countries that pay the whole bill with single payer systems. We could switch to Universal Medicare and reduce taxes. Of course we would have to cut out the private insurance industry, which currently takes a third of our total health care dollars and gives us nothing but paperwork and denials.” – Emergency Medicine
“From sitting in the medical political arena over the past 25 years, watching a lot and commenting very little, that single payer is the future of health care in the US. It will be nearly a carbon copy (remember those?) of the NHS now so vilified in the UK. The only question will be “What percentage of the US population will be in the ‘first tier’ (private insurance)?” I’m banking on <20%”. – General Surgery
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