In the August 4 edition of American Medical News, a publication of the American Medical Association, I find some hope...
The headline reads: Ethics panel may back universal coverage, ponders access as a "moral imperative".
The article reviews the ponderings of a panel of ethicists appointed by President Bush, and "appears set to endorse some sort of societal obligation to provide health care access to all."
Gosh, isn't that what we've been saying?!?! http://www.savehealthcareinwa.org/stories/index.php, http://healthcaremeltdown.blogspot.com/2008/01/advocacy-101-workshop.html, http://kpbj.com/headlines/articles/2003-05-02-HED-16.html.
As I read the article a bit further, I must admit that this cynical old guy is disappointed that "A report is likely to be issued after the November election." And, the article goes on to talk about the panel having exceeded its expertise to attempt an analysis of our healthcare policy from this ethics viewpoint.
This is exactly the place to start a review of our healthcare "system". It really is a simple analysis. Do you agree that access to health care is a fundamental human right? If so, then society has an obligation to ensure that this right is made real to all of its citizens. The mechanism for making that right real certainly is complicated by many competing interests - political, social, economic, etc.
But, if we start at the beginning, we can figure out the rest!