by Samuel Metz, MD
for Health Care Disconnects
If immigration reform isn’t tough enough, watch the fireworks when we include the health care needs of undocumented immigrants. For many Americans, subsidizing health care of the undocumented by higher taxes and more expensive insurance policies is intolerable. We surely cannot afford the expense of providing more care at greater cost to a population of uninvited outsiders.
This is where immigration reform efforts run aground. Above all, we must protect our already endangered health care system from the ruinous expense of caring for the undocumented as well.
Or so goes the argument. Is it true?
The answer is not trivial. The future of both immigration reform and our family’s access to health care rests on getting this right. We run grave risks if we base immigration policy on intuition, no matter how appealing that intuition might be.