The vast majority of Americans would immediately object to a government official having the power to take an elderly person off of a ventilator to make room for somebody else. As a physician and a human being, I find even the thought to be both ethically and morally reprehensible, but under a government-run, socialized health care system that would become the new normal in America.
During the current COVID-19 crisis, we are seeing the importance of building up overcapacity in our health care system. This is wise in case of local or regional crises such as major storms, earthquakes, accidents or terror attacks, and likewise, the current pandemic proves it must also take place at the national level.
Government-run systems simply do not produce overcapacity. In fact, they are incapable of producing it. At his April 14 White House press briefing, President Trump pointed out the facts to prove it. Italy has 12.5 ICU beds per 100,000 people in their population; France has 11.6; Spain has 9.7; and the United Kingdom has 6.6. For years, advocates of moving our country toward socialized medicine have pointed to these countries as models to emulate.