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October 16, 1991

Caring for the Uninsured and Underinsured

Author Affiliations

Philadelphia, Pa

Philadelphia, Pa

JAMA. 1991;266(15):2080. doi:10.1001/jama.1991.03470150050025

To the Editor.  — Even the conservative American Medical Assocation buys into today's politically correct socialist philosophy, as witnessed by Dr Lundberg's editorial1 blaming the problems of the health care system on "institutionalized racial discrimination." Such inflammatory editorials are probably themselves a major reason that national health care seems inevitable. The irony is that both physicians and patients, majorities and minorities, will surely be hurt in the long run by any proposal that gives complete control of health care financing to the government, no matter what the details of the plan.Medicare's recent payment restrictions and regulatory burdens are surely only a hint of the hassles and hardships to come in any universal health insurance system. Only in a virtual dictatorship can "universal access" be guaranteed to any good or service that must be provided by private individuals. Further, as Ginzberg and Ostow's article2 correctly pointed out, even