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Taiwan: “Economic dynamism” Paired with Single Payer

Summary: Recently House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi led a delegation to Taiwan, affirming US support for the country’s continued independence as China stridently pursues reunification. She praised Taiwan’s economic vitality, but forgot to highlight the country’s fine approach to health insurance: single payer.

Letters from an American
August 20, 2022

By Heather Cox Richardson

Pelosi … championed Taiwan as a leading democracy, “a leader in peace, security and economic dynamism: with an entrepreneurial spirit, culture of innovation and technological prowess that are envies of the world.” She explicitly said her visit was intended to reaffirm “our shared interests [in]…advancing a free and open Indo-Pacific region.” “By traveling to Taiwan, we honor our commitment to democracy: reaffirming that the freedoms of Taiwan—and all democracies—must be respected.” 

Comment by: Jim Kahn

So, what kind of health insurance does Taiwan have?

Oh, yeah, single payer, since 1995.

Seems like having universal health insurance paid by the government doesn’t cripple the economy. Vibrant capitalism, supported by a generous and efficient social welfare foundation.

Who knew? (Lots of us, of course.)

Health care costs low, equity and longevity high. Part of the formula for economic robustness.

I wish Ms. Pelosi had made this point.

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