EXTRA: My letter in today’s Wall St Journal re: op-ed published on June 29

Dr. Atlas advocates one solution to the lack of health care for many in the U.S.—increasing access to private health insurance. Exactly how does that improve things? All it does is increase the amount of money in the pockets of the insurers rather than paying doctors and other providers who actually deliver care.

If we aren’t going to return to the gold standard of paying for health care like we pay for everything else—as we use it, why not just spread the risk to everyone with one risk pool. In other words, why not Medicare for everyone? If the lesson is that doctors wouldn’t make enough money and thus refuse to see these patients, increase the payment to the doctors instead of to the administrators of insurance companies.

Insurance companies do nothing but mitigate risk and take resources out of the health-care industrial complex and don’t provide anyone with health care. Get rid of them.

Let the government collect a tax to pay for everyone’s health care and hire a contractor to run the system as it hires contractors to build fighter jets. This would be a single-payer system with competitive bidding for provision of care. It would eliminate a whole lot of middlemen who add no value to health care.

Leonard Zwelling, M.D.

Bellaire, Texas

4 thoughts on “EXTRA: My letter in today’s Wall St Journal re: op-ed published on June 29”

  1. Would treatment for my wife's brain tumor be better managed by a private insurer bureaucrat or a government bureaucrat? Where do you like going better? Starbucks or the Post Office? Your CPA or to an IRS audit?

    1. I do not disdain either. The Manhattan Project and D-Day were Big Govt and Google and Apple are big business. Love them all. As for getting arrested, no experience beyond speeding ticket in 67 years. As for care, doctors do that under the current system or under my proposed one. The difference is in my system they get paid for every encounter at a fair rate.

  2. Both education and health care need to be available, affordable and high quality. The profit motive precludes this. I see first hand at NYU how the profit motive has corrupted both eduction and health care. How can you trust a system where clinicians are encouraged to see more patients and to upcode for those they do see? where consultants are brought in to teach surgeons to operate faster with the goal of increasing the turnover rate of operating rooms? Such a business model will never work for education or health care.

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