Thursday, June 22, 2017

Healthcare: Societal Burden, or Wealth Potential?

According to Reuters, "Most Americans Say Republican Healthcare Plan Will Be Harmful":
When U.S. Senate Republicans unveil their plan to overhaul America's healthcare system, they will face a skeptical public that already does not buy the justification for an earlier version that passed the House of Representatives...a majority of the country thinks the American Health Care Act would be harmful for low-income Americans, people with pre-existing health conditions and Medicaid recipients.
Among those polled, even a Trump supporter said, "It'll make people's deductibles skyrocket. So I'm not for this healthcare act. I'm for insurance for everyone." And Joseph Antos, a healthcare expert for AEI, said of the still rising costs, "It would be great if a politician had the nerve to be brutally honest. None of them seem to."

How to think about the fact, so many are "giving up" on healthcare as even having the potential of positive outcomes? Whichever way one slices it, the news does not appear good. While policy makers will likely reduce healthcare access wherever possible in the foreseeable future, these reductions still don't get at the root circumstance today's healthcare has generated, regarding long term federal budget obligations. Indeed, that would still hold true, even without the added consideration of aging demographics.

As healthcare (in its present organizational capacity) continues to become a larger part of GDP, relatively less revenue from other sources remains available, to fund its growing costs. As a dependent equilibirum component, healthcare's present requirements for (excessive) input in relation to total output of time based product, contribute to the present low productivity patterns of economic stagnation. This unfortunate reality leaves policy makers on both sides of the aisle, with few choices or long term solutions.

Plus: Even as more healthcare cuts inevitably take place, more senior citizens will seek access to healthcare in the years ahead. Since today's healthcare is still equilibrium dependent rather than capable of providing equilibrium growth, it slowly - but surely - reduces the same economic growth which so many had hoped would be able to reverse its growing burdens. Paradoxically, the way healthcare is currently organized, contributes to its dependent equilibrium status. What is needed, are ways that healthcare could actually contribute to wealth creation, instead of detracting from wealth creation.

In the meantime, the crowding out effects of healthcare are also exacerbated by monetary policy. The Keynesian 20th century approach to inflation, was an approach which had little means to respond to the crowding effects of relative inflation or deflation, depending on sector. Healthcare has become a major source of supply side inflation. Yet when central bankers attempt to compensate, they inadvertently make the situation much worse, by leaving less money for the representation of other vitally important marketplace obligations.

There are ways out of this dilemma, but they include thinking about today's healthcare burdens somewhat differently. Ultimately, populations could internally coordinate healthcare alongside other important time based services. There are wide swathes of knowledge which could can be tapped, that have been available for centuries and are not subject to the same knowledge use protections, as present day "cutting edge" procedures. New wealth could be incrementally built by focusing on everyone's skills capacity, and healthcare could function with other knowledge as components of tangible, time based product. This increased quantification could do much to restore productivity.

Eventually, healthcare would become part of a broader marketplace where - until now - productive agglomeration has largely been missing. These new service generated marketplaces would relieve considerable pressure on policy makers, not to mention the pressures for services which have been borne by taxpayers, governments and employers alike. Human capital investment would be compensated as a continuous part of educational processes. This is all the more important, since the normal investment burdens of today's physicians make it difficult for them to practice in rural areas of the U.S. By making organizational capacity for healthcare less equilibrium dependent, the healthcare of the future would no longer have to present such a societal burden.

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