No, Bernie, Other Countries Do NOT Ban Private Care

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Bernie Sanders has been accused of flip-flopping on union members’ access to private health insurance. This misses the main point.

Sanders is giving impassioned speeches about how all other civilized nations have universal, taxpayer-funded “healthcare.” But what he doesn’t say is that almost all those countries have a private option also. Only Canada outlaws private care.

In his favorite Nordic countries, private insurance is growing. In Finland, the failure of single-payer reform brought down a government, which proposed vouchers to receive care from private clinics if timely services were not available in the public system.

The U.S. Veterans Administration is considering ways to give veterans access to private care to reduce waiting times.

Why would anyone want to pay for care that is supposed to be “free”? Union members work for their private coverage—it is part of their compensation. Why should they be forced into a shabby, inferior public system?

Why shouldn’t all Americans be free to spend their own money for the care of their choice?

For more information, see “Why Not a Private Option?” AAPS News, August 2019, and op-ed “Medicare for Bernie.”