Instead of One-Size-Fits-All Care, We Need to Strengthen America’s Health Care System

 

At a time when Americans are looking to elected leaders in Washington to prioritize the issues that matter most – we’re hopeful that we can come together to strengthen the health care system we all depend on.

While our current system is not perfect – we know there are many parts of it that are working well for patients across the country. And thanks to ongoing progress, we can continue to build upon and protect the parts of this system that work well – while improving up the parts that do not. 

Recent Kaiser Family Foundation polling even shows that most Americans are happy with their family’s current coverage, and nearly seven in 10 Americans surveyed by Gallup in December rated their coverage either “good” or “excellent.”

Over the last decade, employer-sponsored health coverage has been on the rise. According to a recent Kaiser Family Foundation poll reported in Axios, approximately “seven million more people gained employer coverage between 2013 and 2017 — nearly as many as the 10 million people who were covered through the Affordable Care Act’s marketplace last year.”

Market-based care such as this is working in tandem with public programs – helping to extend quality coverage to more Americans than ever before.

But there is much more work to be done to ensure a strong health care future for all Americans – including lowering costs and extending coverage to millions more who need it, while maintaining the choices, benefits and quality that our existing system allows.

Unfortunately, rather than building on what we know is working and focusing our energy on strengthening weaknesses in this system – some on the national stage are calling for a very different approach – “Medicare for All” that would mean all Americans have less choice and control over their doctors, treatments, and coverage.

This one-size-fits all approach would lead to a government-run health care system that would:

  • – Move health care decisions away from doctors and patients to politicians
  • – Add trillions of dollars in higher taxes for hardworking families
  • – Lower the quality of care provided
  • – Force longer wait times
  • – Severely limit patient choice

The truth in all of this is that few Americans, once educated on the impacts of Medicare for all, actually support this idea.

In fact, the Kaiser Family Foundation survey found that:

  • – Net favorability drops as low as -44 percentage points when people hear that Medicare for all would lead to delays in some people getting some medical tests and treatments.
  • – Net negative favorability also drops to -28 percentage points when respondents are informed it would “threaten the current Medicare program, -23 percentage points when they learn it would lead to higher taxes for many Americans, and -21 percentage points when they find it would eliminate control and choices currently enjoyed through private health coverage

As this debate continues in Washington – the facts are clear.

The more than 180 million Americans with employer-sponsored insurance should be allowed to keep their coverage options, and we must do more to improve the system for every American. Let’s work together to lower costs, increase patient choice, and improve quality. That’s how we’ll achieve the health care future Americans deserve.