Free Health Care Denied … By Government

Amid the government’s rush to push through health-care “reform” legislation in order to supposedly lower medical costs and provide coverage to those who do not have it comes this story of government actually preventing such an outcome in some states. One man, based in Tennessee, wants to do the following, according to the report:

He wants his volunteer eye doctors to grind new glasses on the spot for those having trouble seeing. He wants his dentists to pull rotten teeth and perform root canals in badly neglected mouths. He wants to give checkups and HIV tests to the uninsured and the underinsured. No questions asked.

This would all be done free of charge from volunteers. But the story notes the following problem with achieving this:

The only question is whether the bureaucrats will let him do it.

It seems that many states regulations place significant barriers on doctors wanting to come from other states and practice, even for free. The reason given by one spokeswoman for the California Board of Medicine was the following:

We don’t know how well someone may have been trained in Texas or Alaska or somewhere else … We have our own standards. They’re quite high.

How does the saying go? The path to what is paved with good intentions? Often good intentions on the part of government have horrible unintended consequences. In this case, the consequences are less people able to receive free medical care.

In light of the supposed “crisis” in our health-care system in this country, perhaps some states should rethink their well-intentioned but harmful regulations. I believe it was Ronald Reagan who appropriately noted the following of government do-gooders:

The nine most terrifying words in the English language are: ‘I’m from the government and I’m here to help’.

In this case, if government really wants to help, it should probably just get out of the way. Unless, of course, it is more concerned about controlling people than helping them.

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