Opponents of the “government option” in health insurance coverage warn us that in an effort to control our lives, the government option will drive the health insurers so many love out of business. Fair argument, other than the “insurers so many love” part, but that’s a different rant. The government can operate these programs without the need for profits, putting for-profit insurers at a distinct disadvantage.
But what if the government does a lousy job at administering health insurance coverage? It’s a rare program where the government is both efficient and effective. Will we all die waiting for the OK to get that emergency appendectomy or the chemotherapy?
Nah. This is America. Necessity is the mother of invention and free enterprise will come up with a solution. I predict the solution will be non profit organizations (NPOs) stepping in and taking charge. NPOs operate like any other business, but they take their profits (technically, their surplus) and apply them to the goals of their business, rather than distribute dividends to shareholders. They also achieve significant tax advantages.
If the government can’t get the job done, NPO insurers will step up to the plate and hit a home run.
Epilog: It wouldn’t surprise me if the government contracted out the “government option” to various NPO insurers.