Sunday, February 26, 2012

Fixing “Health Care”

This topic has created, over the years, much talking and writing by lots of knowledgeable people. Guess what? They have not come up with one answer on what really should be done.

When one looks at how to fix a problem the normal approach is to look into the situation and seek out/investigate what is causing it. When the primary problem is identified the approach is to then work on this issue.

One interesting and important fact which comes out when looking into the problems in health care is that around 85% of each dollar an employer pays in premium for their medical insurance benefit plan goes to medical treatment expenses. When you look further you also find these expenses have been growing much faster than general inflation for some time. Ok – now we know the primary problem what is being about it. The answer – not a lot. The normal reaction when learning this is – Why not? The answer to that from many – it’s to complex!

What are some of the common comments about what to do?

+ Some advocates think the answer is to get everyone covered.

+ Some suggest spending a lot of money on technology to eliminate paper, which hopefully will also reduce unnecessary or ineffective treatment.

These two suggestion and many others however do not get at the ever increasing cost of medical treatment.

Five individuals Bloomberg Business Week identified as experts where recently interviewed about “fixing health care” for an article in the February 27 to March 4, 2012 issue. The points they bring out are not specific to Connecticut but guess what – they also apply to us. Take a look!

A medical insurance professional I work with, through the National Association of Health Underwriters, who lives in Mass. had a commentary in the February issue of Employee Benefit Advisor about efforts to “fix health care”. He reports on some things being done up there and comments on their effectiveness.

Want to share some ideas on this challenging and very important topic? Send a comment.

John C Parker, RHU. LTCP

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