Letters to the Editor

Health care and free market

It is obvious the Republicans never had a health care law. Their goal is a complete removal of the Affordable Care Act and a return to the free marketplace. But health care can never be delivered through the free market.

Where is the competition when I call 911 in the middle of the night with a heart attack? Are there a number of ambulances I may choose from or a number of emergency rooms from which I may choose? Or where is the competition when a pharmaceutical company charges me $100,000 per pill and no other company can compete because of patent laws. Should we get rid of those laws?

And how about the regulations requiring drug companies to prove their medicine is useful? Shall we get rid of those, so the free market can work? The goal of the free market is to enhance the corporation's bottom line – to make lots of profit. Its goal is to enhance profit not health!

Fortunately, we already have a health care service that enhances health not profit. It is called Medicare. Last year I had surgery on my heart and was given a bill for $244,915. However, Medicare disallowed much of the bill and made them settle for $28,648 which is an 88 percent reduction over the free-market charges. And the Republicans haven't even come close to providing a bill their leader, President Donald Trump, said we would have – better health care at a lower price for everyone.

John R Thompson

Chapel Hill

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