WASHINGTON – In yet another reminder that new government insurance systems – often known as “buy-in” or “public option” schemes – simply represent “stepping stones” to Medicare for all, Modern Healthcare reports that even supporters of such schemes and health policy experts in the states acknowledge that a one-size-fits-all government-run system is the end goal:
Opponents warn that state public-option proposals are just a way station on the path to a federal single-payer system, which advocates don’t necessarily deny. “There’s no question the endgame is single-payer,” said Dr. Roger Stark, a health policy analyst at the conservative Washington Policy Center in Seattle.
U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), who supports the approach on the federal level, recently admitted it would bring about the “slow death” of employer-provided and other private coverage and serve as an “on ramp to a single-payer system.”
Recent studies provide dire warnings when it comes to the negative impacts a new government insurance system would have on providers and patients throughout the country:
- One study, prepared by KNG Health Consulting for the American Hospital Association and the Federation of American Hospitals, found that: “For hospitals, the introduction of a public plan that reimburses providers using Medicare rates would compound financial stresses they are already facing, potentially impacting access to care and provider quality.”
- Another study, conducted by Navigant, found that government insurance systems such as “buy-in” or “public option” could force hospitals to limit the care they provide, produce significant “layoffs” and “potentially force the closure of essential hospitals.”