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Switzerland's Innovative, Conservative Healthcare Program

What's the Latest Development?

While Americans like to think of our healthcare system as the free-market alternative to single-payer programs, Switzerland actually has the most free-market oriented system in the west. What's more, that system translates into universal coverage with low entitlement costs. "Swiss government entities spent about 3.5 percent of gross domestic product on healthcare in 2010, compared to 8.5 percent in the United States. That’s a difference of more than $5 trillion over 10 years: real money, especially relative to our $16 trillion debt."

What's the Big Idea?

It seems as though both Representative Paul Ryan’s "premium support" proposal for Medicare and Obamacare's insurance exchanges are modeled on the Swiss system. "There is no 'public option' in Switzerland. Instead, citizens qualify for means-tested, sliding-scale subsidies and choose among a variety of regulated, private-sector insurance products. The Swiss have the freedom to choose their own doctors, as Americans do, and access to the latest medical technologies. They also have short waiting times for appointments."

Photo credit: Shutterstock.com

Read it at Reuters

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