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WASHINGTON — Americans are not clamoring for single-payer health care, as Sen. Bernie Sanders has suggested they are, in proposing a plan that would have the government foot most medical bills.

He’s right that support for the idea has grown and in some polls tops 50 percent. But polls suggest that the prevailing sentiment is ambivalence.

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  • the primary problem with health care is this: We have allowed the entire sector (nearly 20% of our overall economy) to function completely free of the two mechanism we use to control price and protect consumers – real market competition on price, or in the absence of competition as with utilities, price regulation. the mostly for-profit providers, hospitals, labs. pharma all are legally allowed to collude and set prices based on what they would LIKE to earn or collect as a profit margin. They do this with total disregard for the ability of their customers to be able to afford the goods and services they sell. This is unprecedented and destructive. It has predictably led the current situation, where the prices and incomes have risen so astronomically that the federal government now pends close to $600B of taxpayer money annually via Medicare, Medicaid and Obamacare insurance subsidies to cover the shortfall between what the participants in the industry demand and the customer can pay. The inherent dynamics of this situation dictate that the trend will continue relentlessly. Single payer is one of the only options to correct the madness. The federal government can insist on TRUE competition between the players, or institute real price controls based on cost and reasonable returns, as they do in the case of utilities. The other key to affordability is to eliminate the insurance company layer, and just process the payments. The savings we will all see due to the loss of premiums, copays and deductibles will more than make up for the increase in our tax bill.

  • Americans may not seem to support single-payer, but extremely wealthy and powerful forces in the medical/pharma industry complex skew any honest news coverage of the topic. With all the skimming multi-millionaires/billionaires in this industry, how could a single payer not be cheaper?

  • As a Canadian the most of us just can’t understand why you oppose universal health. It’s not more expensive it’s cheaper. Americans spend about 17 % of GDP on health care. Canada spends about 11%. We live longer and this idea of going to the US because we have waiting lists is garbage. If your situation requires attention now you get it now. If your situation says you can wait you wait or you can pay extra to jump ahead and go to the US. Nothing complicated.

  • Health insurance is not free. But Americans apparently​ want it to be
    free, because charging​ for it would be perceived​ as a tax increase. Has anyone consider​ed calling​ it what it is, i.e., an insurance premium? Charging​ 5% of gross income, matched by the employer, would raise​ about a trillion dollars a year and at the same time save employers a whole​ lot of money.

  • The US is the only 1st world country without universal healthcare today. There is no reason why a 2-tier healthcare system like in Germany would not work in the US. 33% of support when the conversation is huge! This is going to be the greatest revolution in the US after the Civil Rights movement.

  • This article is bullshit. Since the introduction of Bernie’s Bill originally 2 years ago it has gone from zero Senate cosponsors to 16 within a week. 76 in the hose to over 100. Not cause they wanted to, but due to grass-roots efforts. Pushing this narrative is hurting our country and you’re CLEARLY doing the bidding of the establishment. Please stop it’s gross.

  • The way to get this to happen is reduce the age of qualification for Medicare by one year per year, so it would be a gradual process with the age of qualification getting closer by two years per year. That would give people a hope and a goal, so they would support it.

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