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Health vs. Auto Insurance

posted Nov 6, 2009, 7:02 PM by Robert Alexander
There are so many constitutional ways that the law makers could consider bringing MORE competition to the health care industry in order to bring costs down. After the meeting in Sen. Warner's office I was able to engage in one of several all-to-brief conversations with fellow patriots about a concept that at least has much more potential than the approach of the current bill before the house.  I hope Mr. Wenzel doesn't mind me sharing his take on it.

November 6, 2009

Rob: 

Like I was saying, this comparison may have been studied and discounted, but I think certain points of it do contain possible remedies to some of the current health care problems. I heard somebody bring up this subject on a talk show a month or two ago. The idea did not originate with me but it did resonate and has stuck in my mind ever since.  Hence the following:

 Auto Insurance covers serious, catastrophic conditions, i.e.: accidents, collisions and damage, liability, hospitalization, property damage etc. Comprehensive (fire, break-ins etc) is optional. Also optional is collision to your own vehicle.

Auto Insurance does NOT cover maintenance or repairs to one’s vehicle, i.e.: tune-ups, oil changes, lube jobs, inspections, brake jobs, muffler, tail pipe, transmission, A/C, leaks, squeaks etc.

If Auto Insurance had to cover vehicle maintenance as well as collision and liability, then very few people could afford it on their own. That’s why everyone pays for vehicle maintenance with cash, check or credit card. There are no insurance companies, middlemen or bureaucracies involved when the car is in for maintenance.

Suppose Health Insurance only covered serious illnesses or conditions requiring hospitalization,

surgery, cancer treatments, dialysis, CT scans, MRIs, delivery of babies and the like—expensive or catastrophic procedures.

Suppose Health Insurance did NOT cover health maintenance or other minor or elective items such as: regular doctor visits, coughs, colds, flu, aches, pains, check-ups, blood and urine tests, podiatry, diet counseling, dermatology, erectile dysfunction, abortions and a host of other items.

That would mean that you would pay the doctor at the time of the visit with cash, check or credit card, just like you do at an auto repair shop or car dealer. Thus, the doctor would be paid instantlyno insurance companies, no regulators, no government, no paper work, no Medicare etc. It might be reasonable to assume that if you could unload all the insurance companies and paper work and reduce the threat of trial lawyers and government regulators, that doctors could cut their fees substantially. The doctor would receive payment at time of service. Doctors could adjust their fees voluntarily to suit a patient’s circumstances.

Another thing: Auto Insurance is available everywhere, interstate and across the country. Health Insurance restricts Americans to a handful of companies operating only in the state where the person lives. Competition between Insurance companies is thereby restrained. People could make arguments against the Auto-Health comparison by saying that Auto Insurance is mandatory. That if you don’t have it, you have to pay a $500 fee to the state to buy it for you; therefore Health Insurance should be mandatory as well. But this is a false analogy. You have to have Auto Insurance because of liability to others. You can damage or kill other people with your car. But you can’t hurt someone else with your own personal medical condition.

Rob, please take the above for what it’s worth.

 

Regards,

Ed Wenzel, Vienna, VA 

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