Americans have an unprecedented opportunity to reform health care access and catch up with the rest of the developed world. While both major political parties squabble about whether the Affordable Care Act went too far or not far enough in harassing and soaking consumers, the public can suggest a common-sense, money-saving approach to health insurance for everyone.

People are throwing health care dollars away by paying insurance companies, who do all they can to avoid paying for health care expenses. The voting public is maintaining a system that allows drug companies to charge Americans much more than the very same drugs companies sell ito Canadians, and fostering an unwieldy health insurance bureaucracy that is driving doctors crazy.

A universal single-payer system, similar to Medicare, would eliminate wasted health care dollars by cutting out the for-profit middle man (insurance companies) and allowing the government to negotiate reasonable prices for drugs and medical technology.

Imagine going to the doctor, dentist, or psychologist when you feel you should go. Imagine paying no office visit fee, and nothing for prescriptions, either. Believe it or not, such a system could save as much as half the current health costs in this country. It would also save lives.

The next time people hear about a proposal for Medicare for all, realize it could be a chance for what Americans deserve — health care for every American, for a lot less money than is being charged now by a corrupt and bloated for-profit health empire.

Cynthia Stancioff, Chesterville

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