It’s important to look at the cause for the issues we face as a culture. For example:
Why are life expectancies falling?
Is it because people don’t have access to healthcare? Has healthcare become too expensive, and therefore it’s not used? Are we lowering life expectancy because of the type of food we eat?
Each of these questions points to a possible solution, none of which can be solved by simply making healthcare free. Any regulation or requirement put into place by our government comes at a cost. The cost isn’t magically absorbed by the government, it is passed on to citizens and consumers in the form of taxes and increased fees along with cost associated with government oversight.
The true way to lower healthcare cost is to open the market in a way that causes providers to compete for business. Competition forces efficiencies and lowers cost. A good first step would be requiring healthcare providers to explain the cost involved with consuming healthcare. Millions overuse healthcare because they are not concerned with the cost. Someone else pays the bill, whether the payer is an insurance company or the government doesn’t really matter. Either way it causes overuse and wasteful spending. If people are responsible for their own healthcare the business community will explode to meet the needs of the budget conscious consumer. There will be healthcare professional in every small town pharmacy, Walmart or Walgreens willing to help consumers with their cold, flu or blood pressure medication all for a very low fee. Give the poor and middle class the option and they will become great managers of their own healthcare.