Congressman Chip Roy Introduces Game-Changing Medical Freedom Bill

Written by Daniel Horowitz

There is no life or liberty so long as our health care is controlled by an artificial government-created cartel. Endless government programs, regulations, subsidies, and market distortions have created a monopoly of health care providers and health care insurers. Government tax policies tether health care to medical insurance and medical insurance to place of employment, while boxing out the patient from being the true consumer. As we saw with COVID, this monopoly is not only a problem with costs, but has deadly consequences, as the government was able to channel tyranny and dangerous protocols through a narrow network of health care administrators, while censoring the few remaining independent practice physicians questioning the narrative.

In order to rebalance health care back to independent doctors and patients, U.S. Representative Chip Roy (R-TX) has introduced a bill that will expand the size and scope of health care savings accounts so that direct primary care will get the same tax treatment as the insurance cartel. In order to understand the importance of his bill, we need to rehash the original sin of our decrepit health care system, which is resulting in declining life expectancy.

In 2021, a total of $4.3 trillion in health care expenditures was paid out by the public and private sectors, accounting for roughly 18.3 percent of the economy. That is an increase of $1.1 trillion in just six years and represents almost $13,000 per person. No other country comes close.

The reason health care is so expensive is because of the way we pay for it. Far from having a capitalist system, we have a venture socialist system, which in some ways is worse than pure socialism because we incur the greed of private enterprise without the inherent check and balance of a free market. Just about half of the $4.3 trillion cost is born by the federal, state, and local governments. The majority of the remaining half is paid by employer insurance plans thanks to a tax exclusion, but those plans have become astronomically expensive under Obamacare. Just 10% of all health care spending is actually out of pocket from the consumer to the provider.

Thus, we have no free market. The consumer is not the consumer, so the system does not cater to you. The government is the consumer. Federal spending on health care has grown from $85 billion in 1987 to nearly $1.5 trillion and has doubled since the passage of Obamacare. However, much of the rest of health care spending comes from the $1.1 trillion paid by employer-based insurance plans. The reason medical insurance is tethered to employment is because the government offers a tax exclusion, now worth more than $350 billion a year, to give money to the insurance cartel rather than providing higher wages. Ideally, this tax exclusion should be abolished, but it’s politically arduous to do so. The next best thing is to equalize the tax treatment of employer plans with individual health care spending. This is where Chip Roy’s bill, HR 1769, comes into play.

At present, health savings accounts can only be used for tax-exempt health care spending if someone has purchased an eligible high-deductible plan. Only 10% of people are eligible for such plans. Furthermore, these restrictions on HSAs allow the government to dictate how you spend your health care funds. Also, the IRS only allows $3,850 a year in individual contributions ($7,750 for families) when employer plans are often valued at well over $20,000 a year, often even upwards of $30,000.

Roy’s bill would expand eligibility for HSAs, referred to as Health Freedom Accounts in the legislation, to all people who want to pay for their own health care (mix of out-of-pocket payments or insurance), and raises the annual cap to $12,000 for individuals and $24,000 for joint filers. The bill also allows penalty-free rollover contributions between HFA accounts and affords beneficiaries of deceased persons to transfer funds to their own HFA tax-free.

Very importantly, under this proposal, you’d be allowed to use the tax-exempt account to pay for your own insurance premiums, monthly concierge fees to direct primary care doctors, or other risk-pooling arrangements, such as health sharing ministries. While equalizing treatment of individual health care purchase with employer-based insurance, the bill also equalizes tax treatment of insurance with Health Freedom Accounts by allowing employers to enjoy the same tax exclusion through funding HSAs as they do with giving that same money to the insurance cartel. As such, many companies might decide to give you the money in the form of an HSA, allowing you to purchase your own plan along with millions of other people and sap the money from the insurance mafia.

This is not just an affordability issue, but a life and death issue. It’s not just that Obamacare and other government monopoly-inducing policies have made it impossible for the working class to afford health care with dignity and without government subsidies, it’s that we no longer have freedom to actually access proper treatment. It’s only through this filtered monopoly that the government was able to create unanimity of opinion behind insane policies such as mRNA vaccines, Remdesivir, ventilators, and blocking early treatment for COVID. Decentralizing health payments and empowering consumers is the only way to break the government monopoly.

What has the consolidation of health care through monopolizing insurance wrought? The percentage of U.S. physicians employed by hospitals, health systems, or corporate entities grew from 28% in 2010 to 62.2% in January 2019 to 73.9% as of January 2022. This is how you get unanimity of opinion behind Remdesivir and mRNA and against early treatment with anti-inflammatories. This is how you get death panels, which were actualized through the COVID treatment protocols.

Allowing broad HSAs for every individual, self-employed business owner, or employee will flood the market with individual consumers for whose business providers can compete. Ultimately, the next GOP president needs to also repeal insurance restrictions so that people have choices for cheaper insurance plans to shop for. We must also impose price transparency so that consumers can shop for health care the way they do every other product. Our individual freedom, and indeed life itself, relies on the future of health care freedom, because we can’t live without it and it is by far the largest sector of our private economy and government spending.

“The American people are absolutely fed up with Big Health care, government bureaucrats, and Congress destroying affordable access to the greatest medical care in the world,” Roy said. “It’s time to cut through the knot of government-corporate collusion and put power back in the hands of those who actually provide it and those who actually receive it.”

Indeed, all roads to freedom and limited government lead through the path of health care freedom. An informed and empowered consumer is the only way to prevent COVID from ever happening again.

Daniel Horowitz is a senior editor of TheBlaze and host of the Conservative Review podcast. He writes on the most decisive battleground issues of our times, including the theft of American sovereignty through illegal immigration, the theft of American liberty through tyranny, and the theft of American law and order through criminal justice “reform.”