Letter: Single-payer isn’t the only idea to fix health care

Published 7:08 pm Tuesday, October 29, 2019

As a small business owner, I’m concerned that Congress is too fixated on one-size-fits-all solutions to health care. Whether they call it Medicare-for-all or a Medicare buy-in, these proposals ultimately seek to put all Americans on a national health care plan that will be funded by increased taxes on business and workers and likely restrict access to care to control the unsustainable costs of over $32 trillion over 10 years.

Instead of working on ways to take control of health care, Washington should be giving workers and employers more flexibility to choose insurance plans that make the most sense for them.

New ideas like association health plans are already giving small businesses the ability to band together and reduce costs in the small group market by spreading risk among multiple businesses.

With employers responsible for providing the health care benefits of over 180 million Americans, shouldn’t we be empowering these businesses and their workers to help reduce costs?

The private sector has plenty of ideas if Washington would only listen. Value-based pricing, high risk pools, reinsurance programs, and other ways to reduce risk and encourage competition to drive down prices for workers and employers alike.

I hope members of Congress, like Sen. Tina Smith, focus their attention on these ideas to build on the system we have rather that replacing it with something as untested as the singe-payer proposals being discussed in D.C.

Robert Hoffman

Albert Lea