Thursday, August 2, 2007

Hsieh and Hayden LTE's in Denver Post

The July 31, 2007 Denver Post printed the following LTE's by myself and Richard Hayden:
Re: "Uninsured grow as hospital costs soar," July 27 news story.

The real culprit behind rising medical costs is government interference in medicine. In the sectors of medicine where there is the least government regulation, such as cosmetic surgery and LASIK, we see a continual decrease in prices and improvement in quality. This is the normal pattern of a free market, and something we take for granted in the rest of the economy. Just ask anyone who's bought a DVD player recently.

Instead of more government regulation of medicine, we need less. Free-market plans, such as health savings accounts combined with high-deductible catastrophic insurance, preserve the patient's right to spend his money as he sees fit, and have been proven to cut costs while preserving high-quality medical care.

Free-market medicine is the only genuine cure for rising health costs.

Paul Hsieh, M.D., Sedalia

Re: "Child health care funding is vital," July 22 editorial.

Your editorial claims that the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) should be expanded. It indicates that President Bush supports renewing SCHIP but not expanding it, and that Sen. Ken Salazar claims that SCHIP is a moral obligation. But SCHIP, like all entitlement programs, forces some to subsidize the expenses of others.

Each parent has the moral responsibility to care for the health of his or her own children, and parents need to evaluate their decision to have kids based on their ability to finance appropriate care. It is morally wrong to force anyone to subsidize the expenses of someone else's children, whether for health care or any other cost.

Anyone who wishes to help those who cannot afford medical care should do so voluntarily through private charity, not by trying to use the force of government to extort money from others. The funding of SCHIP should be neither renewed nor expanded. Instead, this immoral program should be abolished.

Richard Watts, Hayden