Same tired arguments

September 12, 2012

Caledonian Record

To the Editor:

Randy Brock has released an outline of his health care proposal. It is a repeat of the same tired arguments that we have been hearing for decades, with ideas that are the foundation of our current dysfunctional American health care "system." Mr. Brock repeats the free market myth about the need for "abundant competition." But the worn-out notion that more insurance companies will contain costs and provide universal coverage is completely divorced from reality.

There are more than 1,200 private health insurance companies in the United States today, each with multiple plans, all "competing" with each other on the free market. This is supposed to lower costs and cover everyone. Yet 50 million Americans have no health coverage at all, and even more have such high co-pays and deductibles that they can't afford to get care when they need it. The state of Texas alone is a living refutation of Mr. Brock's conclusions. According to the Texas Department of Insurance, there are more than 40 health insurance companies operating in the state. And yet, according to the Census Bureau, as of 2010 Texas had the highest rate of uninsured (26.1%).

When one looks at the U.S. as a whole, or specifically at the state of Texas, expanding the number of insurance companies in Vermont will do nothing to control costs or expand coverage.

Frank Nicosia
Middlebury, Vt.