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Radical Change to Our Healthcare Delivery Model Is the Only Viable Option

Like many of you who have primary responsibility for negotiating annual health insurance renewals, I spend the last couple of months of each calendar year on pins and needles as we anxiously await the declaration of our health insurance company regarding CUPA-HR’s healthcare cost for the following year. As a small employer, we are really as the mercy of a limited number of carriers who will even consider covering our 28 employees. For the most part, our employees are in excellent health and the majority of our employees participate in our wellness program. Those factors have little, if any, impact on what we pay for the fully insured plan that covers our small workforce.

There is no question that the annual exponential increases of our healthcare costs are not sustainable. Until we agree that the current healthcare delivery model is broken, small employers like CUPA-HR and (to some degree) large employers will be indebted to the few viable providers available in the US. I do not know all the provisions of the proposed single-payer plans being proposed in California and Vermont, but I am very pleased to see that some lawmakers are challenging the status quo and trying to create real change that could provide broader, better coverage that creates the possibility of limiting or eliminating numerous layers of administrative “middlemen” from our healthcare cost.

I know there are many pros and cons and many sides of this debate. I welcome your thoughts and feedback. What do you think will create the radical change necessary to improve healthcare, improve access to healthcare and lower costs?

Andy Brantley

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  • Patti Couger

    The model is indeed broken and we can only hope someone, or entity, will step up to the plate and offer up some viable alternatives. One controversial suggestion of late is to invoke federal price controls on the industry as a whole, not just Medicare reimbursements. That elicits some dicey debate !

    Another huge issue, in my opinion, is that many retirement calculators do not include a realistic inflation factor for medical expenses. Their one inflation factor is said to be a composite, and of late is around 2-3%. Medical expenses loom so heavily on retirement income needs that to assume they are adequately treated in a composite of 2-3% is unconscionable.

  • Julia

    Decreasing waste in hospitals will save billions a year that can be directly put into health care. The amount of waste and perfectly good supplies that are disposed of everyday in every hospital and doctors office nation wide, if not wasted could generate enough revenue to fix the system.

  • Even though I slightly disagree, this was a very interesting read.