Saturday, December 17, 2016

Dr. Elaina George — The Fix For Our Ailing Healthcare System

The stated intention behind Obamacare was to improve the healthcare system. However, it has become apparent that the changes implemented were based on incorrect assumptions: first, that having health insurance equals access to quality affordable healthcare; second, that central planning via government regulations and mandates could be used to control costs; and third, that the behavior of doctors and patients could be controlled by implementing rigid practice guidelines (i.e., value based medicine, care driven by algorithms instead of physician judgement) and increasingly shifting the cost of healthcare to patients leading them to self-ration by pricing them out respectively.

The end result has been an increase in healthcare costs, decreased competition among insurance companies with monopolies in some states, and a decrease in both primary care and specialist physicians. Whether you like Obamacare or not, an honest assessment would conclude that it is simply not sustainable.

There is a solution which would provide a solution for everyone.
  1. If you like Obamacare you can keep it.
Expand Medicaid and Medicare – Block grant money to the states so they can figure out a solution that works best for their unique needs. This would allow people who can’t afford it to have insurance.
  1. Free everyone from the mandate with the associated fines.
This would allow people who want to buy private insurance to become healthcare consumers and would encourage insurance companies to once again offer insurance products that people actually want and would buy (for example affordable catastrophic high deductible plans). You would likely get young healthy people to buy insurance increasing the pool of healthy people lowering the cost for everyone.

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