Most Americans are still convinced that a government-operated health system such as exists in Canada and every other nation with a standard of living similar to the U.S. is somehow a big mistake. One of the ways in which Medicare is kept under the business sector is that the government actually out-sources the bureaucracy involved to the private health insurance industry. Most Americans will tell you that this makes it more efficient and less costly than "socialized medicine."
Think again! This system costs twice as much as would a single-payer system such as they have in Canada, and a recent report from the Government Accountability Office reveals that of the 49 major health insurance firms who had their Medicare operations audited in the most recent year of record, 41 were found to have made major errors. That is 84 percent who flunked! Frankly, large business corporations are less efficient than government in many ways. Have you tried phoning a customer service 800 number recently? What you get is often worse than the "red tape" in a government bureaucracy.
We insist on maintaining polices that leave nearly 40 million Americans with no health coverage at all and are forcing new generations of doctors into institutional employment because they cannot make a living in private practice. Our present system is simply not more efficient than what Canada and other nations have. What is the real power of the free market myth here?
The ethical issue is this: When we insist on maintaining arrangements that cause harm and suffering to other people for no good reason other than it is the way we are used to doing things, we are in clear violation of all of God's ethical commands. People who are serious about following Jesus cannot continue to take this position without very carefully examining it.