Our health care system? Socialized with a mix of government (more efficient/inexpensive) and private (less efficient/expensive) payers:
But 1986 does seem to me to be the real moment when America socialized medicine – under Reagan! In a real Ron-Paul style free market in healthcare, where everyone has to buy their own insurance or not and deal with the consequences, chronically sick poor people must, in principle, be left, at some point, to suffer and die alone or bankrupted. Something in the American psyche does not want that to be America. Whatever part of the psyche that is, it sure isn’t inspired by Ayn Rand. It wants to put a floor under human suffering and sickness, to have a minimal baseline for care. We don’t want to see people dying in the streets.
The ACA will reduce these emergency room visits which every insured health care user already pays for. The Republican party wants to enact policies that will make ER for neglected care trips or desperation moves like this, neccessary:
The Washington Post reports that, according to the inmates handbook, prisoners in North Carolina typically only have to pay a $5 to $7 co-payment for most visits or emergencies.
“However, no one will be denied access to healthcare whether they have money or not,” states the handbook. “You will not be charged for visits about life- or limb-threatening emergencies, referrals to specialty clinics, defined chronic disease such as TB, HIV, high blood pressure, diabetes, pregnancy care, vaccinations, and periodic health assessments.”
State prisoners in North Carolina absolutely have better health care then the average American.
The cost of health care for the average American in 2010? $8100/year according to the NIHCM report on health care spending. Also, 5% of the population is responsible for 50% of the health care spending as obesity becomes a greater cause of superfluous health care need. In 1997 health care spending was $4166/person. From 2005 to 2009 spending rose 18.4%.