What to do about a corrupt Veterans Affairs health care system?
Why, give them more money, of course, which is precisely what Congress did. The House passed H.R. 3230 on a voice vote and a Senate version passed 97-3.
The CBO estimates the bill will cost about $54 billion a year, but the estimate could be low because it is unknown how many veterans will take advantage of its low-cost coverage.
“The magnitude of those budgetary effects is highly uncertain,” the CBO admits. “A significant number of veterans could receive new and expanded health care benefits under the House bill. How many would ultimately receive those benefits and the resulting costs will depend on a number of factors that are very difficult to predict.”
Where will the money come from? Nobody knows.
If the VA is inundated with more veterans seeking inexpensive coverage, how long will wait times be and how quickly will the cover-up begin?
Throwing more money at a broken system is not the answer.
A Wall Street Journal editorial points out:
“What neither bill does is address the fundamental problem of excessive demand, which stems from the VA’s guarantee of virtually universal care at little to no out-of-pocket costs. This would involve increased cost-sharing, but that would mean reforming a government program through free-market incentives. Democrats oppose this, and Republicans are afraid to propose it.”
Congress often makes things worse when it tries to fix things.