The top 10 percent of individuals in spending account for 65 percent of health care costs. By removing them from the standard insurance pools that means that the other 90 percent would have to pay insurance premiums that funded only 35 percent of total health care. [House Speaker Paul] Ryan says that this would lower insurance premiums through competition, but that is nonsense.
Today’s message is just a reminder of one of our problems that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) did not fix. A well-functioning health care financing system should be designed to obtain maximum value by spending our funds on health care and not wasting them on excessive administrative services and on profits that add no value to health care. Yet ACA perpetuates policies that turn these priorities upside down, to the pleasure of Wall Street.
This highly technical paper is a difficult read, but it provides important lessons for design and application of health policy research. The subjective design of the research model and subjectivity of the resulting decision making impacts the external validity of the experiment. That is, can the results of the experiment be applied generally outside of the experimental model?
Without additional enabling federal legislation, Colorado is not able to enact a bona fide single payer system. However, their ballot measure – Amendment 69, ColoradoCare – would improve efficiency, equity and coverage through the health care financing system in their state. Strong opposition is expected since ColoradoCare could be disruptive to some of the well-financed stakeholders, especially the private insurance industry.
We now have an epidemic of physician burnout. It has become a crisis not only because of what it does to physicians’ well-being but also because of a deterioration in the all-important physician-patient relationship and in the medical practice environment.
Blue Cross Blue Shield members are not excited about having to shoulder more of the cost through high-deductible health plans, but these plans are here to stay. So much for consumer choice.
At a time of renewed interest in single payer reform in the United States, it might be helpful to look again at why the voters of Switzerland rejected single payer reform in September, 2014. Although their financing system is superior to ours, it does have several serious deficiencies that would be addressed by converting to a single payer system. In this article, Claudia Chaufan discusses lessons that we can learn from the Swiss that may help us in our advocacy for reform.
The Republicans keep talking about coming up with a plan to replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA). But as this New York Times editorial explains, their criticisms of ACA are often not fact-based and the proposals they have telegraphed in net would leave us much worse off. Yet, as the Democrats tout the successes of ACA, it is clear that their model falls far short of the high performance system that we deserve.
The results of this study are intuitive. Low-income individuals who obtain Medicaid insurance coverage not only are protected from medical bills when they must access health care, they also have a reduction in other unpaid bills and a lower incidence of account referral to collection agencies – a benefit to both the patients and their potential third-party creditors.
This is yet one more study that shows that deductibles and coinsurance are increasing quite rapidly in employer-sponsored health plans – plans that have been protected and encouraged by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) as they are the most common source of health care coverage in the United States. This increase in cost sharing is causing financial hardship, especially for those who have greater health care needs.
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