February 02, 2011

Ever Wonder Why Lasik and Contacts Keep Getting Cheaper?

Writing about tonight's repeal vote ('Obamacare In Serious Condition'), Brian Darling tells us that "Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) argued for free market health care reform and discussed how Lasik eye surgery and the cost of contacts have gone down because of competition." Dr. Paul said:
With regard to the specifics of the health care bill, there are some problems in health care. As a physician, I’ve seen some of the problems. You know what the number-one complaint I got? It was the expense of health insurance, the rising expenses. The federal takeover of health care did nothing for that; in fact it has increased expenses, you see premiums rising. When you see problems there are two directions to go ... You could say: do we need more government or less government? From my perspective as a physician, I saw that we already had too much government involvement in health care. I saw that what we had going on limited competition. You need more competition in health care if you want to drive prices down. You need to allow insurance to be sold across state lines. You need to allow competition in prices. One of the surgeries that I did was lasik surgery, where you correct someone’s eyes so they don’t have to wear glasses. No insurance covers it. You think maybe this body will get together and force people to buy insurance for lasik surgery? You know what? Without government getting involved competition drove the prices down on lasik. The prices were driven down because the consumer was involved. The same way with contact lenses, you can buy a contact lens for $4, maybe $3. It used to be $20 or $30. Competition works.

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