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To The Editor:
In response to last week's letter on health care, entitled "Two failed systems," I think that some of us might be missing a few points. The first is that our current system is far from the best and needs to be replaced.
The second is that a completely new system doesn't have to be a duplicate of Canadian or British Systems. To use the systems of these countries as an excuse to avoid overhauling our system is a mistake. Canadian friends of mine are actually relatively satisfied with what they have. There are certainly other countries as well that we can borrow system concepts from.
As a person with a condition that requires the attention of a specialist, I am quite aware of long waiting times right here in the U.S.A. As a self-employed contactor, my options for insurance are limited and expensive mostly from having to be pooled with few people. This is not just a Vermont issue. I have had similar experiences in the two other states where I was self-employed. People are limited in their job selection because of the lack of employers that offer coverage. In this country only about 60 percent of employers provide health insurance, and that number is steadily decreasing. Health benefits for retirees are burdening corporations and municipalities across the country. On top of all this, a large percentage of the population already gets its care paid for or managed by the government. It is time for federal government to organize a health care system that shares the expenses and benefits equally across the country.
So Bernie, stand up tall on that soapbox and call for the replacement of employer-based health insurance with a system that includes us all.