Thursday, November 06, 2008

Reforming "healthcare"

Healthcare reform has been talked about a lot in the last couple months. However, there has been little, if any, coverage or discussion about the real reason medical insurance is expensive - medical treatment is expensive.

One big reason medical insurance is expensive is the fact that 70% or more of medical claim costs can be connected to individuals lifestyle!

Looking at some details on medical treatment cost I think some points from the CEO of a medical insurance company in Mass. are very important. I can also confidently say the same points applies here in Conn. James Roosevelt, Jr., president
and CEO of Tufts Health Plan, advocates for "eliminating wasteful spending".

He brought out in an article that the New England Healthcare Institute (NEHI) has" identified "five sources of wasteful practices that, if eliminated, would offer dramatic cost savings." They include:
+ "wide variations in patterns of care"
+ "medical mistakes,"
+ "overuse of hospital emergency departments for non-emergencies"
+ "underuse of drugs and other therapies to manage chronic conditions"
+ "overuse of antibiotics for viral infections."

In his article he also recommends improving "strengthening the primary-care system" and putting "an emphasis on health rather than healthcare".

Will plan to comment more on the importance of working on medical treatment and medical claim costs since these are solutions vs. all the "talk" about access and things like bringing small groups of individual together which will have little affect.

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