The win/win option that isn’t single payer or Obamacare

Khairul Abdullah/Flickr Creative commons image of Swiss flag over Lake Lucerne.

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What’s the best thing about Switzerland? I don’t know but the flag is a huge plus. This classic joke is not only funny it’s a huge statement that says more about their healthcare than ours.

The debate that’s carried on for decades in the United States has once again made headlines: Healthcare. This year has seen Republicans effort to repeal and replace fail and Democratic-socialist Bernie Sanders release his medicaid for all bill. Albeit, the question stands: which healthcare system is better?

Socialist Bernie Sanders released the final draft of his Single Payer Bill this past week. To recall, Senator Sanders single handedly moved the Democratic party more to the left than ever, i.e. more progressive. His bill calls for “universal healthcare”, leaving no one behind. A state that was close to passing single payer was California, albeit it would have cost an estimated $400 billion, two times the state’s’ budget.   

As of recently, Republicans have also scrambled together and proposed the Graham-Cassidy Bill. They have until September 30th to turn something in. A couple months ago, Republicans almost repealed and replaced Obamacare, but were short one vote. Immortal Senator John McCain voted nay, allowing Obamacare to live another day.

Since the Affordable Care Act was passed back in 2010 I didn’t think or know much about it. Once I became a healthcare ‘expert’ – by researching and debating this topic in my speech class – I saw the flaw that was Obamacare.

Now at the age of 21, I’ll admit, I don’t go to my doctor as often as I used to. It’s not that I’m unable to – it’s because I’ve switched health insurance various times. The switcheroo occurred late in 2015 when my family received a notice that we’d no longer be covered, and so the hunt for health insurance began.

It was a long process that hurt us financially during tax season in the beginning of 2016, as my parents and I were fined for the months we didn’t have health coverage.

Many have the same predicament as I do, some might not have health insurance at all and others are most likely spending out of their own pocket.

Now let’s look at Socialista Sanders single payer healthcare plan:

  • It is a single payer bill. Basically, the government pays for it all, removing every other competitor that offers a healthcare plan.
  • Sanders states his bill gives “Medicare for all,” yet it is only a catchy phrase to go along with this bill, as it would renovate Medicare as it expands.
  • Taxpayers, get ready to feel the burn (in your pockets).
  • It would take over 4 years for Single payer to spread throughout the states. That is 4 years too long.
  • According to Urban Institute, this bill would cost 32 trillion dollars over the next 10 years.
  • All or most Americans will be covered.

Verdict: The Bill will be rejected. Democrats won’t favor this bill nor will Republicans.

Moving forward, let’s look at the Graham-Cassidy Bill:

  • It eliminates Medicaid expansion.
  • It will get rid of tax credits, employer mandates, and cost-sharing subsidies.
  • States would have simplicity of coverage requirements.
  • According to Avalere Health, this bill would reduce federal funding to states by about $215 billion by 2026.

Verdict: The Bill won’t pass because Immortal John McCain and Rand “Sean” Paul voted against it.

And so, what are we left with?

Say hello to the Swiss healthcare system. Also known as Santésuisse, its healthcare system is in my view the best in the world. The Swiss system carries similarities with the Affordable Care Act but has various favorable differences.

Let’s take a look:

  • Employers do not provide health insurance – citizens purchase individual policies.
  • Freedom to choose plans tailored to their needs
  • No consumer-driven model
  • Premiums do not vary by age
  • The Swiss give substantial financial assistance to their citizens that might not fully afford to pay a plan
  • Their maximum deductible is $2,500 compared to the United States can reach as high as $7,500.
  • Its average monthly premiums are $243 compared to the United States monthly premium cost of $536.
  • The Swiss government spends only 2.7 percent of GDP on healthcare; while having 11.5 percent federal income tax (U.S. federal income tax is 35 percent).
  • Their systems goal aims to prevents citizens from spending over 10 percent of their income on health insurance.
  • Fees of doctors, hospitals, and providers are highly checked upon in a scheduled manner by Switzerland’s tool of national reimbursement.
  • It covers 99.5 percent of its citizens
  • Did I forget to mention it’s the best in the world!

Verdict: The Santésuisse is bipartisan. The system contains liberals’ universal healthcare and regulated insurance markets. It also appeals to conservatives’ low government spending and private managed healthcare.

Americans and our government have to highly consider this option. We have the technology, the money, the resources, etc. As mentioned before Santésuisse is similar to the Affordable Care Act, but with major differences. Therefore, why not give this system a try?

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