Venezuela and the United States share problems which are harbingers of what the United States could face in the future with health care. Venezuela is a socialist paradise where the government controls key parts of the economy like health care. Government control has led to a disaster with their health care system because they make decisions to control costs through the government’s manipulation of prices for medical services. Historically, governments in the past that created price controls only sent prices up, not down. This is true of both Venezuela and the United States.
The United States and Venezuela are printing money at astronomical rates to bolster their spending power. This creates inflation. Inflation is a hidden tax because you must pay higher prices for the same basic items you paid less for in the past. At the present time, annual inflation in Venezuela is 45%. Although the US doesn’t have that high of a rate, financial and economic experts have predicted that as soon as the Federal Reserve slows our printing presses, we will have a huge jump in inflation along with a mounting deficit and a monstrous debt.
Inflation will cause health care costs to surge up. This is precisely the problem in Venezuela today and the problem the US faces in the future. The situation has been exasperated in Venezuela by the government’s efforts to unsuccessfully hold prices down. This has caused medical supply shortages, doctors leaving the profession, rationing of care and mismanagement of the health care system.
Although we are only experiencing the first throes of ObamaCare, it is obvious that the pricing policies set under the Affordable Care Act will spin our health care system into the same orbit as Venezuela. We already have a doctor shortage and because of the prices offered under ObamaCare and Medicaid, at least 60 to 75% of American doctors have said they will not accept new patients or participate in these plans. This automatically creates a rationing of care. Furthermore, the insurance companies that are participating in ObamaCare are creating HMO style networks with fewer doctors and hospitals which creates additional rationing.
ObamaCare is not cheap for the consumers even with subsidies. On average, the insurance companies must cover their expenses and expenditures. When the government printing press slows down, inflation will force insurers to raise premiums, co-pays and/or deductibles. Those who found ObamaCare to be affordable will find it unaffordable because wages tend to lag behind inflation.
Like Venezuela, Obama and the Democrats have centralized control over a key industry in our economy. It is forcing businesses, large and small, not to expand thus maintaining a high unemployment rate and stifling the nation’s economic growth. ObamaCare can only work, even partially, if we have a thriving economy to pay the expenses of the program; however, we have the worst recovery in history. ObamaCare is sinking us into a bigger morass of debt that is unsustainable. Yet Obama and the Democrats don’t care that it is hurting the American people.