Issue #2 Healthcare

Issue #2 Healthcare

I support a free-market healthcare system with limited government involvement. I don’t support the government providing insurance itself such as Obama Care, Medicaid, and Medicare. When you and I as citizens work together, we will improve the economy and healthcare system. Then, many people would not need this form of health insurance, and you will have better private insurance company choices that are affordable.

If the present government run healthcare insurance programs that are available now continue, there will be government programs taking over more and more of the healthcare segment, leading to mandates and rationing of care that will be unavoidable. Many physicians who currently accept Medicare and Medicaid are limited to the time they spend with patients because of the amount of billing paperwork they must do in order to get reimbursed by the government. Also, patients are limited in what care they receive due to certain regulations on testing and medications. I believe healthcare and insurance should be left to the private sector. Where you can buy insurance across state lines if you find a better and cheaper option. I also support medical tort reform which limits malpractice cost, deters medical errors, and ensures patients who are injured are compensated fairly. This would lower the cost to the patient by reducing overhead for malpractice insurance.

Hospitals were built on public trust, that trust has been lost, and now we have a public trust crisis in healthcare. While most in healthcare truly care about patients, a small group of special interests has made this a terrible system that the rest have got caught up in, and that only serves to profit them. More money is spent each year on healthcare lobbyists in Washington than the defense industry. That trust has been lost by the business modeling of price gouging, and predatory billing. 64% of patients say they have avoided healthcare for fear of the bill. New cures and treatments are useless if over half of patients won’t come in. We know it’s good people working in a bad system that’s got out of control. It’s a terrible system where we offer discounts to groups by inflation. Nowhere else do you buy goods and services and don’t know the prices until after the fact. Currently, there is literally a “code” for billing that most citizens are not made aware of and cannot read. This also drives the price up, because now you must hire secretaries to read the code. Trust could be regained if we have upfront pricing for common and predictable services.

Public accountability could do a lot for this, as well as possible legislation by the states, and congress. For example, when you Google a hospital on the review of the hospital you could put the average price markup, the leapfrog quality score, and their billing quality metrics. I believe hospitals should be required to provide a bill in plain English. These bills are uninterpretable by the hospitals that issue them. Patients should be given real prices for non-emergent services (over 60% of services elective and scheduled) when they ask. Prompter service should be given when patients call and ask about their bills by closing the loop, and calling the patient back. Any hospital that doesn’t provide palin English billing information doesn’t have the right to sue a patient and garnish wages. Many of these are non-profit that could get more back in tax benefits if they paid taxes instead of suing patients. There should be no surprise billing such as with “out of network” care. Patients should not be charged for “never events” when the provider makes a mistake.

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