The Right to Healthcare—Both Liberals and Conservatives Should Be Able to Make This Happen!

Here is an article in the Duke University student newspaper, summarizing a public forum I led last night. Really nice summary—almost makes me sound coherent!

In the midst of an ongoing debate about the future of the nation’s health care system, Duke professor Peter Ubel discussed the limitations of the current system and encouraged bipartisan solutions at a talk Monday.

Ubel, the Madge and Dennis T. McLawhorn University professor of business administration, medicine and public policy, suggested that policymakers should seek to achieve a minimum health care standard for the country. Solutions from both conservative and liberal politicians could be successful, he noted.

“I really think we have a right to a decent minimum of health care in this country. We ought to promote that right,” Ubel said. “There are liberal and conservative ways to meet that goal. I don’t really care that much [about] how we meet the goal, but let’s meet it.”

After Republicans maintained their majorities in both the House of Representatives and Senate during the 2016 elections, several prominent government officials—including President Donald Trump—have promised to repeal the current framework of Obamacare, but their plans for replacing the act remain unclear.

Ubel said that although the law’s future is unclear, Republicans may favor a consumer-oriented replacement, which would provide Americans more choice in their coverage and make the sector more privatized. He added that this approach, if chosen, could potentially have a successful outcome. He pointed to countries like Germany, which has a model with both the private and public sectors playing a role.

“If we’re going to move toward a more consumeristic health care system, I’m okay with that as long as it’s compassionate consumerism,” he said.

Keeping consumers informed of treatment options and quality control measures would be an important aspect of such policies, Ubel said. He added that most patients are often too uninformed to judge the health care options available to them.

To read the rest of this article, please visit The Chronicle.

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