Please forgive me, but I am just a simple sales guy with an economics and philosophy degree that is more than a decade old. Furthermore, it can be easily documented that those formative years were spent less on educational growth and more on brain cell destruction.

Regardless, the current health care conversation is leaving me a tad perplexed. Here we all are complaining about the high cost of insurance, and by inference, the high cost of care, and what are the solutions proposed to address said issues? Practically all demand oriented solutions. What I mean is solutions oriented with reducing demand in order to lower price (anyone who has ever taken economics knows that there are fundamentally three ways to lower costs: 1) reduce demand, 2) increase supply, or 3) a combination of the two). The demand solutions include the capitalist's consumer-driven health plans that discourage wasteful utilization, and the socialist's nationalized health care programs that dictate that demand "go away" by decree of the government.

However, a recent Congressional Service Report titled "U.S. Health Care Spending: A Comparison with Other OECD Countries" has clearly demonstrated that, despite our higher costs in care, the good ol' US of A is lagging seriously behind in office visits per capita. The Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development consists of 30 democracies that are considered the most economically advanced countries in the world. The home of the brave and the free ranks 22nd out of 27 countries in office visits per capita. In addition, the data has also shown that specialists in the United States are paid $50,000 more than specialists in other developed countries. The study concludes that our purple mountains majesties fall far behind in weekend and after-hours physician access. This variance would suggest that our great nation is suffering from a shortage of physicians. Is this due to our lack of mental resources available to fill the pipeline of doctor demand or possibly the onerous gauntlet we put young minds through to achieve physician-hood? Perhaps we need to consider alternatives beyond the traditional Ph.D. to primary care such as nurses or primary specialists? Whatever the case, rarely is a "price issue" corrected by either demand or supply; it is usually a combination of both. I am curious to see what the supply solution will be. Will anyone be brave enough to suggest a supply solution? I wait with my flag in hand.

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