American health care is so expensive because of unrestrained free markets, right? Dr. Brook used to think so, until he learned the truth in his medical training. He was an unabashed supporter of socialized medicine, until he saw what socialism was doing to the people it was supposed to be helping, and to the country as a whole. He changed his tune completely during medical school, and opened a family practice that operates as closely to free market principles as possible. The result? Affordable, thorough care brought to those people that the main-stream media say have "no access to health care."
This book explains what Dr. Brook learned that changed his attitude. It is the result of his years of training and experience as a doctor, and extensive research. How would we know what a free market would do to health care? We have not had one in many decades. We have layer upon layer of government regulations which strangle the efficiency of health care delivery. Obamacare is just the latest layer, although a very important one.
Most of the solutions put forth to try to make health care affordable center around getting more of it covered by insurance or government. The simple truth of the matter is that we are over-insured, and that is the underlying problem. Tax incentives promoting health insurance for even the simplest things have led to our high costs. By not taking any insurance, Dr. Brook and others like him keep their costs down to surprisingly affordable levels. This is true in family practice and even for complex surgical care.
The "poor" in America have electronics like computers, smart phones, and huge high definition TV sets. Why are electronics so affordable? Why are MRI scans not just as obtainable to "poor" Americans? The difference is found in free markets. Dr. Brook not only explains why this is true, but he gives examples of actual free market medical practices providing the same kind of results - care that is affordable to the patients and profitable to the providers of care.
Many others who call for health care reform are advocating more government control, including completely socialized medicine. This is like taking a patient in congestive heart failure with fluid overload, and giving him a big bolus of IV fluid. Others just recommend trifling around at the edges of our problems, with changes to health savings accounts and the structure of Medicare. This is like taking our fluid overloaded patient and just changing the formulation of the IV fluid we are giving him. Why not take an extreme approach, and drain off excess fluid? This book makes the case in a very compelling, well documented way, that government interference has caused our problems with high cost and low levels of service. The solution, then, is not more interference, but less. Remove government interventions at all levels, and allow a free market to flourish. Health care will become affordable, and high levels of service will return. The patient will once again be treated like a valued customer that the doctor will work hard to please. House calls and thoroughness will revive.
This is about more than just health care. Our entire economy is at risk of collapse if we continue on our current course.
If you are opposed to a government-run system of health care, then read this book. It will confirm your suspicions about socialized medicine, and give you intellectual ammunition to argue your case in a logical and thorough way. If you are undecided, then read this book. It will explain the workings of our health care economy in a way that you probably have not heard before. If you are dedicated to socialized medicine, then read this book. If you want to elevate the condition of the lower classes, which socialists say they want to do, then you need to use free markets to accomplish that goal.
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