Quote of the Day Category

For a pharmaceutical firm infamous for abusive pricing of their products, a 9.9% increase is an obvious attempt to keep under the radar by avoiding a double digit increase, but nobody is fooled by this. Valeant could have had a 9.8% increase, but, no, it had to be 9.9%.

  • Comments Off on Valeant’s 9.9% price increase doesn’t fool anyone

It is really a sad commentary on the dysfunctional state of our health care financing system when insurance deductibles – supposedly designed to make patients better health care shoppers – have caused such great financial burdens that a market of plans has been generated to insure against deductibles and other cost-sharing losses that frequently are no longer affordable.

  • Comments Off on Doubling down by insuring against losses from insurance gaps

Who benefits from direct primary care?

In: Quote of the Day

What problem is being addressed by the establishment of direct primary care practices (DPC)? The administrative hassle in dealing with a multitude of payers is replaced with a single retainer fee paid by the patients. That benefits physicians by reducing overhead expenses and freeing up time for a more relaxed clinical work environment.

  • Comments Off on Who benefits from direct primary care?

Are exchange premiums really that high?

In: Quote of the Day

Much has been written about the anticipated large increases in premiums for the nongroup health plans being offered through the ACA exchanges (Marketplaces) compared to the more modest increases in premiums of employer-sponsored group plans. This new Urban Institute report shows that premiums adjusted for plan equivalence for the nongroup exchange plans have actually been lower than those of employer plans. So what is the significance of this?

  • Comments Off on Are exchange premiums really that high?

Under their conservative government, Australia seems to be creeping toward American-style privatization of their health insurance. Over 90 percent of Australians are concerned about this “Americanization” of their system. Can’t we learn something from them?

  • Comments Off on Australians concerned about ‘Americanization’ of their health insurance

The public option is back

In: Quote of the Day

This week an intensive campaign is being initiated in support of a “public option” – offering the choice of a public, nonprofit insurance plan which competes with private health plans. Our enthusiasm should be tempered.

  • Comments Off on The public option is back

We read repeatedly about how out-of-pocket health care spending is exposing patients to financial hardship. Yet our policymakers are continuing to expand that exposure under the screwball concept that spending out of pocket makes patients better health care shoppers, which we know is not true. It only makes them forgo beneficial care. Today’s number should be an awakening call: in 2015, out-of-pocket health care expenses shoved 11 million individuals into poverty!

  • Comments Off on Out-of-pocket expenses drag 11 million people into poverty

Deductibles soar in employer health plans

In: Quote of the Day

Although most media attention has been directed toward health plans offered by the ACA exchanges, most individuals actually obtain their insurance through their employment, so it is important to observe what is happening there, and the news is not so good.

  • Comments Off on Deductibles soar in employer health plans

The good news is that more people than ever now have health insurance. The bad news is that 29 million people remain uninsured with little hope that this number will decrease significantly because of our flawed model of health care financing. The other bad news, which does not appear in this report, is that costs are up, out-of-pocket spending is less affordable, and patients are losing choice of their health care professionals.

  • Comments Off on Health insurance gains fall short of what we could have had

Elliott Fisher and his colleagues at the Dartmouth Institute are generally credited with introducing in 2006 the concept of the accountable care organization (ACO) – coordinated organizations of hospitals and their extended medical staffs that would improve quality and lower costs (HMO 2.0?). The concept was incorporated into the Affordable Care Act. But by 2011, we should have been concerned when Elliott Fisher said, “there are some really important questions about whether this will work.”

  • Comments Off on Dartmouth devises ACO concept, but then abandons its own

About this blog

Physicians for a National Health Program's blog serves to facilitate communication among physicians and the public. The views presented on this blog are those of the individual authors and do not necessarily represent the views of PNHP.

News from activists

PNHP Chapters and Activists are invited to post news of their recent speaking engagements, events, Congressional visits and other activities on PNHP’s blog in the “News from Activists” section.