Monday, February 8

Better Cheaper Band-Aids as Example for Healthcare Reform

What would it be like if band-aids were too expensive? What if the cost of our band-aid insurance had risen dramatically in the last few years? And that the cost of band-aid insurance was sapping wag increases? How should the government respond?

1. Obama Sheer Style
As in the sheer audacity of government take over. We could push for government band-aids to be sold next to the Johnson and Johnson brand at Wal-Mart. But since government can legislate everything from the cost of the petroleum to the cost of labor put into the band-aids and the advertisement J&J can run the result would most likely turn quickly into a government take over while the full cost of band-aids continued to rise. And don't forget that there would be band-aids for abortion, and a mandate that every American carry at least one band-aid in their wallet or purse or risk being fined.

2. Letting 3M and Sam Walton innovation work
If the comparison is between band-aids and health care/health insurance each band-aid would have to be sold in the state it was made in. No selling over state lines. Worse, the government would already be involved in half of the band-aids sold the poor while only paying the manufacturers 40% what it cost to make them with the difference being made up by every other American. Don't forget that the very stickiness of the bandage would be litigated into million dollar settlements by lawyers adding additional costs to those band-aids. Not that you would actually know the cost of those band-aids before you buy them. Cut your hand and must run to the store to stop the bleeding? Both Wal-Mart, Kmart and your local drugstore would all have the bandaid, but they would be unable/unwilling to tell you how much it cost until they send you a bill in the mail six months after swipe the plastic to wrap your oozing finger in protective sheer. 

Is it clear yet why your health insurance and healthcare are through the roof? If band-aids were sold as healthcare is now sold, I could guarantee you they would be irrationally expensive and complicated. 3M and Sam Walton innovation are left to work and bring down band-aid prices, there is no reason why our healthcare could not be brought some of the same reform.