The saucer rolls to a stop on the campus of UNAM and out pops a young space traveler. Approaching a group , the stranger addresses them”Hi, I’m Alexis from the planet Intellection. I’ve come here to the health conference to gather information for an inter-galaxy health report.”
The nearest person answers graciously, “Glad to meet you. I’m Jane Philpott, Canadian Minister of Health. What can I help you with?”
Alexis:Tell me about your health care system
Jane: Gladly. We have great system. Single payer Universal Heath Care we’re very proud of. Everyone is well taken care of and happy with it.
Alexis: A Government sponsored closed system with no need to go elsewhere then?
Jane: Well, not quite. It used to be that way but some people got upset with waiting times and having to go to the United States for faster care, so they sued. Now we also have higher cost Private clinics.
Alexis: If they sued maybe some weren’t so happy. So you have a two tier system where the rich can pay to get better service but all the others have to go along with whatever is given?
Jane: Well, only a few wealthy people are out of the system
Alexis turns to another in the group and asks “who are you?” The man Answers,”Hayek Friedman from Imaginarium.” “What system does your country use” queries Alexis.
Hayek: We use Dave’s Plan.
Alexis: Describe please.
Hayak: Everyone has a Personal Benefits Account (PBA) A minimum of 10%, with a 2017 $28,000 maximum, of everyone’s income is deposited in the account along with any government support funds for the lower-income. As an incentive Employers can also deposit matching funds . Each account purchases a catastrophic health care policy and the first $10,000 is invested in a government enhanced liquid fund to pay for any medical costs up to where the Catastrophic policy kicks in. Beyond that you invest the rest as you wish to secure a better future.
Alexis: How do they access their funds to pay providers?
Hayek: With the PBA associated credit card.
Turning to Jane, Alexis asks “How do you set prices Jane?”
Jane: Our experts do a fine job of setting fair and just prices and payments.
Alexis: Experts, hmm. Maybe that explains your wait time problem. Hayek, how about you?
Hayek: We let the market determine virtually everything. If a provider doesn’t give reasonable, good and timely service, you take your business elsewhere. You’ve got your credit card so you’re welcome anywhere. Same as anything else.
Alexis: Doesn’t this make everyone responsible for a lot of decisions?
Hayek: Just as it should be. Better than some”experts”somewhere making them for you. Markets work best when we allow decisions to be made by people in their own interest.
Alexis: I see you both cover everyone but quite differently. How do handle future innovation in such a constantly changing field? For instance, how do you use the embedded data collectors with new procedures and technologies?
Jane: You mean a chip embedded in people to monitor their health? We on Earth haven’t got there yet. You would have to pass a law, no sure thing and determine the cost and timing if it did pass.
Suddenly a man with orange hair listening in the group intervenes, “What do you mean government ordered control chips? Sounds like the “deep state” to me. The immunizations are bad enough, but this? Not on my watch.
Alexis: Who are you?
The man answers, “I’m Donald Trump, the President of the United States”
Alexis: Great. I’d like to talk with you next. Now, Hayek how would handle the chip and data?
Hayek: When available it should greatly enhance care. With the savings and better outcomes possible, providers would probably offer sizable discounts to entice people to participate. The government wouldn’t be involved so no black helicopters. No one would be forced, but ultimately they’d pay more by refusing. Linking to other innovations would work the same. The market at work.
Alexis: Black Helicopters? Must be an Earth thing. Well Jan and Hayek, you certainly have different health care systems to deliver universal care. President Trump how about your system?
Before he can answer, another member of the group jumps in and saying, “I’m Ezekiel Emanuel and I’m the expert here on the present U.S. health system. You should talk to.me”
Trump: Stow it hatchet face. We’re in the process of dumping your terrible death spiraling Obamacare with the fabulous beautiful Ryancare.
Ezekiel:If it’s so great why don’t you call Trumpcare?
Alexis: Now now gentlemen. Ezekiel why don’t you tell us what you have now and then President Trump you can tell us how he would improve it.
Ezekiel: Employers provide healthcare to most employees. Those not covered can go buy coverage on state exchanges…
Trump: Some exchanges. Large swathes of the country have only one crummy choice. No wonder the premiums are through the roof.
Ezekiel: Let me continue. People with less income get subsidies to buy the policies on the exchanges. Poor people and old people get single payer coverage and veterans have their own system of hospitals and coverage.
Alexis: I’m really confused but everyone has is covered, right?
Ezekiel: No no. Millions have no coverage.
Alexis: President Trump tell me how you’re going to fix this so it’s not so complicated and everyone is covered?
Ezekiel: Ryancare covers even fewer people than we do now.
Trump: We save money.
Ezekiel: Of course, you cover fewer people.
Trump: It isn’t coverage if providers turn away your Medicaid patients.
Ezekiel: You’d push granny off the cliff.
Trump: You don’t use the market to control prices, just dictate to everyone.
Ezekiel: What market? You don’t even have buying across state lines in the bill. We tell the insurance what to cover so women can get birth control. Wait where is Alexis?
Another member of the group chimes in, “Alexis is getting back in the saucer.”
Ezekiel: The saucer is leaving. Alexis is gone.
Trump: Just as well. I was going to have ICE do extreme vetting on Alexis. Can’t be too careful with these strangers. Could be a terrorist. Got to protect the nation so it can be great again. This is our country and we have to keep the weirdos out.
Jane: You do realize Mr. President you’re in Mexico City?