America To Health Care: We Want Our Money Back

Erik Steele | Bangor Daily News | May 23, 2013

Last week, for the first time ever, I paid for my health insurance directly out of my bank account; I wrote a check for $1200 to cover our health insurance for the month I am between jobs. For the last 30 years, most of the cost of my family’s health insurance was paid by my employer, and our share was deducted directly from my paycheck. That share was money I never really felt like we had, so somehow felt a lot less like it was coming out of my pocket than when I wrote a check for $1200.

More and more of America is coming to frame our excessive spending on health care the way writing that check made me see it, as the loss of opportunity to spend some of that money on things of greater personal and social value. Money spent on health care is money that could have been spent on food, clothing, vacations, early childhood development, roads and bridges, public transportation development, education, tuition support for young adults to go to college without incurring huge debts, research and development, and much more.