Here is a link with some information on this.
In a nutshell, the single-payer system is a system where payment for providers (doctors, hospitals, etc.) is provided through a single entity.
In the United States, for example, Medicare is a single-payer system.
There is current debate in the United States Congress about turning the entire health care system in this country over to a single-payer system. Their claim is that with moving to this type of system funds used for administrative costs could be redistributed. They feel that this would take us one step closer to universal health care.
Personally, I think this is a bad idea. Think about it. Who would be in charge of this type of system? Who would that single-payer be? Quite simple, it would be the government.
Now as you know, I am a big opponent of the federal government getting involved in running anything so of course I am against this idea on that basis.
But aside from that, the proponents of this idea have not really thought this out very well. They say that administrative costs in running the health care system could be cut. When in fact, with the government getting involved, administrative costs will at least stay the same as they are now, if not increase. For every program the government takes over, that adds another level to the bureaucracy, more un-qualified friends of politicians are going to want to work in this sector. New jobs in whatever they call the department that will oversee this program will be created. Thus, more, bigger government. Bad idea altogether.
Here is another interesting point that hasn’t been thought through. What does cutting the administrative costs used to run the health care system really mean? Simple, it means people are going to lose their jobs. Think of all the people currently working in the health care industry (not including doctors and nurses and such). We are talking about the people that work in the health insurance industry. We are talking about people that work for hospitals and doctor’s offices filing claims and doing medical coding and things like that. These people are going to lose their jobs in this great effort to reduce costs. When in fact, it is going to end up becoming a bigger drain on the economy.
There will be yet another government department attempting to run yet another ill-fated government program which of course if going to end up costing the taxpayers more money. And on top of that, innumerable people will lose their jobs, thus will end up having to get government assistance to be able to afford to live. Companies will have to pay millions in unemployment, severance pay, etc..and the taxpayers will have to fit the bill for the scores of people that won’t be able to find work elsewhere right away and end up on the welfare rolls.
So, if you haven’t guessed it by now, I am NOT in favor of the single-payer system.