Commentary: fear of single-payer system fueled by American insurance companies
by Wendell Potter
The Center for Public Integrity, Feb. 23, 2015
America is the home of the brave, they say, but a lot of us brave folks are terrified of the way the British do health care.
We’re even afraid of other Americans who aren’t afraid of it, like Dr. Donald Berwick. President Obama nominated Berwick to lead the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services a few years back, but Senate Republicans were so united in their opposition to Berwick that Obama had to wait until Congress was in recess to appoint him. Berwick struck fear in the hearts of the senators when a few years earlier he said a few positive things about Britain’s National Health Service.
The truth is that those most frightened by the National Health Service—then and now—are insurance industry executives. My former colleagues have been unceasing in their depiction of the NHS as “socialized medicine.” How could anything in the world possibly be worse than a single-payer system in which insurance companies would be unnecessary?