Letter: Sliding scale is fair assessment

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I'm a health care worker in radiology project management, having worked with doctors and staff across the country for many years. I have learned a great deal and believe my knowledge matters here. Our U.S. health care system is broken — the Affordable Care Act is a start, with more work pending.

Regarding Scott Stephens' Sept. 3 letter "Health law sure to be a train wreck" and his comments on PeaceHealth, they claim to be a nonprofit when all U.S. hospitals in this classification really are for profit. A hospital or health provider can and does charge whatever they choose for services as long as they stay within federal guidelines. The cost of care is out of control.

Stephens and his family need to shop around for better plans and stop blaming President Obama.

The issue is the charges, not how the providers are paid. The time has come to pass a single-payer health care service. I have done years of research on the rising cost of health care; the issue is cost and that which Medicare has determined fair compensation for treatment. If only we all were 65 … but that's another issue. All should have similar access, with a sliding scale deductible/monthly charge for coverage.

Read Time magazine's March 4 issue, "Bitter Pill," it's the best source of information.

Paul Puttkammer

Vancouver