The government shutdown over Obamacare presents a chance for the public to ask why the cost of medicine is too expensive for the average person to afford, making health insurance a vital necessity.
Health insurance is a means to spread medical costs among society. However, insurance is meant to guard against catastrophic expenses, not to be a subsidy for visiting the doctor. While it is foolish to say there is no incentive for doctors to control costs, medical insurance has been used as a subsidy for so long people accept the notion that medicine should be expensive.
Obamacare does not fix this attitude but rather enshrines the status quo mentality of expensive medicine. Medicine should not be expensive and individuals should not be financially required to subsidize routine medical costs with insurance.
Reactionaries may advance a red herring argument that cheap medicine equals low quality medicine, but quality control has not driven up the cost of medicine. Medicals costs are inflated due to the litigation cottage industry, a shortage of doctors, the short time frame pharmaceuticals have to profit from their inventions, and the availability of subsidy via medical insurance. When cost drivers such as litigation and doctor shortages are minimized, the demand for subsidy will likewise decrease. Cheap medicine cannot come about by increasing dependence on subsidy but rather society must wean medicine off subsidy and, with limitations, allow free market principles to set the price of medicine.
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