Opinion

Rep. Chip Roy: Single-Payer Health Care Is A Pipe Dream That Looks More Like A Nightmare

Clearly, the Affordable Care Act’s failings haven’t proven to Democrats that inserting government and insurance bureaucrats into health care is a bad approach. Democrats touted the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare, as if it were the answer to all our needs, but it has done nothing but hand over power to bureaucrats and break the system further.

Democrats now are touting single-payer health care, which would replace private insurance with federal programs. Senate and House Democrats have garnered more than 130 members to cosponsor legislation for one such single-payer plan.

In his new book, “The Case Against Single Payer,” analyst Chris Jacobs explains how the system would impose a complete overhaul of health care through the vehicle of “Medicare-for-all.” As if the last liberal health care reform didn’t do enough, Democrats are doubling down on taking freedom away from the American people.

A single-payer health care system would kick more than half of America’s patients off their private coverage. What will they get in return? They will receive the glorious prize of some government bureaucrat sitting in front of a computer deciding what kind of coverage and “care” options they now have. Health care will not be about patients and physicians. Health care will wholly be about government bureaucracy and a “one-size fits all” approach — sorry if you don’t like the fit, it’s now your only option.

The flawed system would upend the economy and bankrupt the nation. The United States currently sits $22 trillion dollars in debt which increases by $100 million every hour. Implementing a single-payer system is estimated to cost more than $32 trillion dollars in just 10 years. There isn’t a proposal on Capitol Hill that directly addresses just how to pay for the overhaul, but we can estimate that current corporate and individual income tax rates would have to more than double to pay for the new spending.

How much worse can it get? A lot.

Abolishing the health care industry as we know it would lead to mass job loss and increases in unemployment. A single-payer system could cause 540,000 insurance employees to lose their job, as well as 1.5 million hospital employees and physicians.

Lower pay could cause doctors to leave, increasing the physician shortage. A single-payer system would likely lead to rationing care as physicians and hospitals work to provide for everyone.

We know single-payer systems lead to increased wait times. In Canada, for example, patients wait an average of 4.3 weeks for a CT scan, and 10.6 weeks for an MRI.

These are just a few examples to the nightmare single-payer health care would create. It is clearly not the best path forward for American health care.

The problem with health care in America is we’ve forgotten it’s supposed to be about “care” from a doctor, not a government or insurance bureaucrat. Medicare-for-all displays how single-payer would bankrupt our nation, seize our individual health care freedom, and ruin American health care. 

Chip Roy (@RepChipRoy) is a Republican who has represented Texas in the House of Representatives since 2019. He obtained an advanced copy of “The Case Against Single Payer” from Chris Jacobs, a senior policy analyst with the Joint Economic Committee’s Senate Republican staff and former senior health policy analyst for the Texas Public Policy Foundation. Roy previously worked with Jacobs while both were at the Texas Public Policy Foundation.


The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of The Daily Caller.