Bismarck and Healthcare Insurance: DeLong and DeShort of It

The world’s 1st national health insurance system served the health of the state

Commentary by John C Goodman

Source: Psychology Today

Brad DeLong at The Health Care blog makes these assertions:

  • Bismarck created the world’s first national health insurance system 130 years ago because he wanted to make the German people healthier.
  • The rationale for national health insurance in the U.S. today is the same as it was for Bismarck.
  • People can’t pay for expensive care without health insurance and without health insurance they can’t get health care.
  • “So, unless we adopt the view that those without ample savings who fall seriously ill should quickly die (and so decrease the surplus population), a country with national health insurance will be a wealthier and more successful country.”

Hmm. It’s hard to know where to start.

You cannot give people as a whole more medical care unless you have a plan to use idle health care resources or unless you have a plan to create more providers. ObamaCare doesn’t do either of these things. (Also see my book, Priceless: Curing the Healthcare Crisis.)