Libertarians are committed to pursuing health-care reforms that improve health outcomes while significantly reducing costs.
Everyone wants to live longer, healthier lives. The Libertarian Party of Nevada supports healthcare reforms that would deliver on those goals. Through market based reforms, we can improve health outcomes while significantly reducing costs.
We oppose the Affordable Healthcare Act (ObamaCare), which has only served to dramatically increase the costs of healthcare for the young and healthy, while doing little or nothing to improve access or quality of care for the old and sick. The only healthcare reforms that will make a real difference are those that draw on the strength of the free market. Here in Nevada, we can succeed where federal programs have failed and achieve better health outcomes at much lower cost to taxpayers. Federal laws and regulations undermine competition and innovation in the health-care industry.
State governments cannot undo the Federal Government’s counter-productive policies, and in fact, here in Nevada, the State Government has added their own bureaucracy and red tape to further undermine the health-care market. The result is increased costs without improved health outcomes. Moreover, political control of health care ends up siphoning money into whatever is politically popular, rather than what is most beneficial. Mental health consistently gets the short end of the stick.
As recently as the 1960s, low-cost health insurance was available to virtually everyone in America - including people with existing medical problems. Doctors made house calls. A hospital stay cost only a few days' pay. Charity hospitals were available to take care of families who could not afford to pay for healthcare. Since then, the federal government has increasingly intervened through Medicare, Medicaid, the HMO Act and tens of thousands of new regulations on doctors, hospitals and health-insurance companies. Today, more than 50 percent of all healthcare dollars in the US are spent by the government.
Finally, the government is not good at science, or science advocacy, as demonstrated by the inconsistency of their positions on any number of issues (reversing the approval status of various drugs, and so on). By restricting access to evidence based medicine, people are forced to miss out on beneficial or even lifesaving treatments, and to turn to ineffective or even counterproductive "complementary, or alternative" treatments.
Healthcare in the US is widely acknowledged to be a mess. Government intervention in healthcare markets has created shortages, reduced access to care, driven up costs, and slowed innovation.
Supporters of socialized medicine often justify their position by claiming that they can't in good conscience let anyone die of a preventable condition--yet more people will die of preventable conditions if we attach no price, or an arbitrary price to healthcare, and if we divorce that price from the beneficiaries. They further claim that all of the best healthcare systems in the world are single payer.
Socialized medicine has absorbed an ever higher proportion of GDP even in the countries where it is most celebrated (an unsustainable trend), which disguises growing costs and inefficiency, even as innovation has been stymied, and wait times and the quality of care have gotten worse. The three freest health care markets--Switzerland, Singapore, and Hong Kong, are each among the top performers in the world.
Government controlled care is no different than government provided care. Free market healthcare is the best way to ensure continued innovation in the medical field. The results of this innovation would be lower costs, dramatically increased life expectancy, and higher quality of life in the long term.
Nevada should take control of our own healthcare and encourage private solutions for new innovation and better healthcare services without the involvement of government.