Single-payer health care would serve us well

To the editor:

On April 11 you opined that single-payer health care is always a losing proposition. This statement is interesting because the sole argument is that single-payer health care would deny individuals from obtaining better protection regardless of if they can desire and afford it.

As a public health student, however, my perspective is that Americans already pay the most per capita for health care, where millions of citizens with appropriate earnings are still unable to afford health care. Citizens are afraid to go to hospitals because they are unsure if they will be covered. Prior to the ACA existing, we saw similar rates of uninsured, yet still with the ACA, the sharp increase in health care costs has slowed over a course of two decades.

Additionally, what many don’t realize is that a single-payer system does not need to be radically different than our current system. Single-payer can still include a mix of private businesses as well as self-employed doctors, billing the government based on the services they provide. In this case, the government isn’t directly involved in hospitals/health care facilities or directly employ health care professionals.

On the whole, average citizens are well served by this system. Under a single-payer system citizens will not find themselves in the “coverage gap.” Single-payer keeps representatives accountable to patients, unlike the current system paramountly influenced by private insurers.

Uma Sen

Berkeley, Calif.