Should our country have a universal health care program essay

The health-care debate is moving to the left. But if progressives don’t start sweating the details, we’re going to fail should our country have a universal health care program essay again.

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Be the first to hear about Nation Travels destinations, and explore the world with kindred spirits. Sign up for our Wine Club today. Within the broad Democratic coalition, it’s pretty clear that the discussion of health care has shifted to the left. Mainstream figures like Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, a potential presidential candidate in 2020, are embracing single payer.

115 Democratic co-sponsors in the House. Democrats regain power at some point, this is all very good news for single-payer advocates. But that momentum is tempered by the fact that the activist left, which has a ton of energy at the moment, has for the most part failed to grapple with the difficulties of transitioning to a single-payer system. But the reality is more complicated. For one thing, a near-consensus has developed around using Medicare to achieve single-payer health care, but Medicare isn’t a single-payer system in the sense that people usually think of it. Medicare Advantage plans must have a cap on out-of-pocket costs, for example, while the public program does not. The array of options can be bewildering—it’s a far cry from the simplicity that single-payer systems promise.

At the same time, Medicare-for-All is really smart politics. Medicare is not only popular, it’s also familiar. Many of us have parents or grandparents who are enrolled in the program. But from a policy standpoint, Medicare-for-All is probably the hardest way to get there.

In fact, a number of experts who tout the benefits of single-payer systems say that the Medicare-for-All proposals currently on the table may be virtually impossible to enact. The timing alone would cause serious shocks to the system. Conyers’s House bill would move almost everyone in the country into Medicare within a single year. Radically restructuring a sixth of the economy in such short order would be like trying to stop a cruise ship on a dime.