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Issues > Free Markets > Health Care

Health Care


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The U.S. health care system delivers the best care in the world, but at too high a price and with too many unable to access the care they need. For the past seven decades the government has steadily increased its role in financing and providing health care, starting with the tax exclusion of employer-provided insurance and culminating in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare.

All of this intervention and distortion has had the effect of suppressing natural market forces, creating a system that resembles the centrally-planned economies and puts politicians, bureaucrats, and powerful interest groups in charge of health care instead of doctors and patients.

Obamacare is unpopular and needs to be repealed and replaced, with market-oriented reforms being the foundation of future health care policy. This includes expanding the availability and use of Health Savings Accounts and other patient-centered financing mechanisms, rolling back benefit mandates that drive up insurance costs, and promoting a true free market in health care. It also means equalizing the treatment of employer-provided health insurance, individually-purchased insurance, and health care that is paid for directly.

While many reforms can be driven from Washington DC, Congress also must recognize the important role that individual states have in this area, freeing them to experiment according to their own population’s needs, particularly when it comes to repairing the broken health care safety net. Medicaid should be block-granted to the states, and mandates that limit state flexibility and hinder innovation should be waived.

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