By Floyd E. McDowell Sr., M.D.
Delaware State News, Letters, July 31, 2015
There is one research-proven program and cost-effective solution to this very important huge health care increase challenge that is having a devastating effect on the budgets of all citizens, our state and municipalities and private businesses. It is to enact and implement our state coalition’s single-payer, nongovernment-run Delaware Health Security Act.
If this act had been operational in 2015, it would have saved a minimum of $3 billion of the approximately $8.4 billion we’ll spend this year on health care in our state. It would only take 90 percent of these savings to have thoroughly covered every Delaware citizen and Delaware employees and family members who live outside our state.
This comprehensive coverage for all health care needs would be met simply by using one’s Delaware Health Security Card.
Fifty-five research studies are readily available that support these savings. Two are statewide research studies on single-payer health care reform in our state. Every Delaware citizen should access the Health Care page of our Coalition’s nonprofit, nonpartisan DEinformedvoter.org website to see the long list of specific programs and cost-effective benefits this act will provide every current and future Delaware citizen without the need for any other insurance, deductibles, co-payments or out-of-pocket funds.
Our state’s citizens now pay for 90 percent of all health care costs, by 70 percent from various taxes and 20 percent from out-of-pocket expenses. A state legislator as a key sponsor of this act asked our State Office of Budget and Management to check the act’s cost and savings figures, and this office reported they were correct.
Every one of the other 30 developed nations provide comprehensive health care coverage to all of their citizens at one-half the cost of our system controlled by the totally unnecessary profit-making broker health insurance industry. Twenty-six of these nations use a pure single-payer system. In our state and nation, we have four very cost-effective single-payer health care systems.
These are as follows: Medicare, Medicaid, the VA system and Tri-Care, which serves our military personnel and retirees. All four of these single-payer systems have an administrative/overhead cost of less than 2 percent, compared to approximately 40 percent of our funds wasted on these costs by our corporate-owned system.
Health care fraud is another minimum loss of 10 percent of funds. In a single-payer system, health care fraud is easily detected and prevented.
Polls at state and national levels inform us approximately 70 percent of citizens polled want a single-payer health care system. Our state act is a Medicare-for-All single-payer system. There is no government interference with choosing all health care providers or with providers practicing their professions.
Yet, only 30 percent of our state legislators have co-sponsored our single-payer act, and our governor and Delaware Health Care Commission have totally ignored it — proof positive as to whom they represent in our state-level elected and appointed offices.
Sen. Bernie Sanders, Democratic candidate for president, is a strong, credible supporter of a needed single-payer system that will provide every current and future citizen comprehensive health care coverage using the funds we now provide for health care.
Dr. Floyd E. McDowell Sr. is chair of the Delaware Health Security Coalition. He can be reached at 832-2799 or via email at email@example.com. He resides in Bear.