Medicare for All has become a popular phrase among Democrats, especially the 2020 presidential candidates. Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris and Elizabeth Warren have all voiced support for a nationalized healthcare system under the banner of Medicare for All. A survey earlier this year even showed a majority of Americans supporting Medicare for All.
While Medicare for All may sound like a reasonable solution to what ails the nation's healthcare system for many, critics warn that it is actually a prescription for disaster. Journalist Daniel Greenfield recently wrote a piece called Medicare For All Destroys Medicare, in which he argues that the new nationalized healthcare system would not only destroy private health insurance, but would wipe out the current Medicare system as well.
Other experts agree. Michael Cannon, Director of Health Policy at the Cato Institute, tells KTRH Medicare for All is a terrible idea. "Medicare in its current form is a bonanza of wasteful care, low-value care, overspending, price controls, improper payments and fraud," he says. "The idea of expanding that to the entire population is literally insane."
Cannon explains that expanding Medicare-like coverage to everyone would uproot those with private insurance, those on Obamacare, and even millions of seniors with Medicare who use private providers. "It's insane because it would throw 200 million Americans out of the health insurance they currently have," he says. "They'd all lose the health insurance they have right now and they'd be forced into a traditional Medicare program...in order to pay for that, we would have to double federal taxes."
And even that prognosis might be a little optimistic. A government expert testified before Congress earlier this year that doubling income taxes still wouldn't cover the cost of Medicare for All. "It's not high quality, it's not efficient, and it would be so disruptive (to the economy), there's just no way Americans would go for it right now," says Cannon.