Overview

“We  hold these Truths to be self-evident,  that all Men  are
created  equal,  that  they  are endowed by  their  Creator  with
certain  unalienable Rights,  that among these are Life,  Liberty,
and the Pursuit of Happiness—That to secure these Rights,  Gov-
ernments are instituted among Men.” (emphasis added)

Our history has been spotty at best in securing the  necessi-
ties  of  life for all;  and the conversatives  and  libertarians
assert  that our freedoms have been unduly curbed after 200
years
of legislation at all levels of government.

So far the government,  with the help of private citizens and
charities,  have  been successful in  providing  food,  clothing,
shelter and medical care to all.

However, our system of providing health care has evolved into
an overly excessive,  uneven, potentially disasterous financially
for those unfortunate to need use of its services.

The advent of medical insurance, especially by Blue Cross and
Blue  Shield (founded by doctors for the benefit of doctors)  was
an  important advance to mitigate the financial burden of an  ex-
tensive illness.  (And for the doctors,  had the important advan-
tage that they would be paid for their services.)

As some doctors abused their own insurance system through ex-
cessive  billing  above  the “reasonable and  customary”
charges
agreed to by them in joining the “blues”, Gov. Nelson Rockefeller

and  others  successfully promoted the creation of  more
medical
colleges   to graduate more doctors,  with the  expectation  that
this  would  lead  to more competition among doctors  in  setting
their fees, and hence bring doctor costs within reason.

Other developments were to increase the salaries of register-
ed nurses to more satisfactory levels,  and the privitization  of
community non-profit hospitals into profit-making entities,  with
the addition of new,  expensive,additional layers of “administra-
tors to manage them.

The basic components of health care are,  together with their
national costs and percentage of total medical costs:

1990          1950
Hospital care                 $256   billion
Physician services             125.7
Dental services                 34
Other professional services     31.6
Home health care                 6.9
Drugs & medical nondurables     54.6
Vision & medical durables       12.1
Nursing home care               53.1

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