How would you promote healthcare coverage that is adequate, affordable and accessible for all?

A:

Health care is based upon doctor-patient relationships. One of my proposals is to re-introduce free market forces into these relationships by empowering both parties with economic incentives. Since 1986 EMTALA (the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act) has provided us with de facto universal health coverage. This congressional act allows any person to walk into an ER and receive treatment, regardless of ability to pay. The cost for this, on average, has been 6% of hospital revenue, although the costs to ER physicians has been much higher. I propose an expansion of EMTALA’s reach to all physicians, requiring them to provide 6% of their care at no cost, and in exchange, allow physicians to set their prices free of Medicare control. Patients would be economically empowered by “depositing” their Medicare and health insurance payments into a personal account, similar to HSA’s, (Health Savings Accounts) which would be transferable or convertible to cash upon death, if not utilized, and health care expenses would be deducted as used.

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