Every American knows that we have a health care crisis in our country. Not only are over 47 million people without coverage, the COST of health care and insurance is growing rapidly.
Thankfully there is a simple cost effective step we could take that could immediately move us in the right direction.
Universal prescription drug coverage for every American.
Think about it. While there are many folks who can't afford to see a doctor, when you DO see a doctor more than likely she will prescribe a drug to treat your ailment. Most medical conditions are treated with some sort of medication.
I'll use myself as an example. I am currently without health insurance and have chronic high blood pressure. I am on 2 medications that control my blood pressure.
While I must visit my doctor every year for a follow up, its my daily medication that keeps me healthy. I can easily afford the yearly doctor visit ($100 or so). Its the monthly prescription drug bill that breaks the bank (2 blood pressure drugs and a allergy medication = over $100 a month.)
This plan wouldn't solve our health care crisis, but it would go a long way in the right direction.
I'll bet we could use the incredible purchasing power of 365 million Americans to negotiate a much lower per person price than what is available now. With universal coverage there would be incredible administrative savings (the time and money spent sorting out who is covered, etc.) If this were the plan imagine the jockeying by drug companies to win THAT contract!
Even without full fledged "universal health care", universal PRESCRIPTION coverage would help all Americans.