Monday, February 04, 2008

Healthy Choice?

Paul Krugman has some interesting things to say in today’s New York Times about the differences between Hillary Clinton’s and Barack Obama’s plans for increasing health insurance coverage among Americans.

I must say he makes a good point about the potential shortcomings of Obama’s plan, which avoids calling for mandated coverage.


Andy said...

Hmm..I don't see mandated health insurance guaranteeing universal coverage any more than mandated auto liability insurance is now. If anything, I think I'd expect employers to dramatically slash existing benefits as soon as it looked like the government was going to offer coverage to everyone. Why pay for something if the federal government will do it for you? Right now most employers under state mandates probably don't want to amend their national policy over one state, but if the whole country went under a mandate they'd be forced to re-evaluate their health care plans.

Granted, I'm heavily biased towards Obama for foreign policy reasons. And honestly I'd have to look at the MIT study and other studies to say for sure. But the success of mandated coverage in smaller, less demographically dynamic countries doesn't persuade me that it would work here.

Greg said...

I'm more inclined toward Obama myself, which is why I found Krugman's take interesting.

I don't think either plan could bring about anything resembling universal coverage (if they even became law in the first place), but employers (small businesses particularly) are already re-evaluating their health plans due to spiraling costs. I don't see how that situation is going to resolve itself without government intervention.