Noting that every other highly developed nation has universal healthcare, Gaffney pointed out to the panel that “overall, the healthcare systems of these countries are quite high quality. Overall, they have higher life expectancies than we do; they have lower infant mortality… Overall, these nations achieve better results with less money.”
Asked why a free market system for healthcare can’t work “like it does with auto insurance,” he said:
A true free market in healthcare is something… no civilized nation would ever accept. You’d have people literally dying on the street because they couldn’t afford the care. You can’t have a free market in healthcare when you think something is a right… that people should have healthcare by virtue of being a human being, then you cannot leave it to the free market. That means that people who can afford it get it and everybody else suffers.
I work in an intensive care unit. I’ve seen people come in with life-threatening complications ’cause they couldn’t afford care… I don’t want to see that anymore, and we need, as a nation, to decide that that’s not going to be acceptable.