Friday, January 22, 2010

5 Real Ways To Make Health Insurance Affordable

Rather than Obamunist "Care", there are alternatives, says Dr. C.L. Gray, president of Physicians for Reform.

1. Sell insurance across state lines:
  • State mandates drive up costs; health insurance for a 25-year-old male in New Jersey costs nearly six times what it does in Kentucky, largely because of state mandates.
  • Allowing businesses to purchase insurance across state lines empowers consumers, not Washington, and does not cost a dime.
  • An effect of this would be to make the more ridiculous state mandates, like insurance coverage birth control for women when out of pocket it costs them less to get a month of "The Pill" than it does to get a month of Ipad or other cell phone service. 
2. Let individuals purchase health insurance with pre-tax dollars, just like businesses can:
  • Insurance companies serve businesses, not patients; businesses purchase employee health insurance with pre-tax dollars while individuals purchase insurance with post-tax dollars making their insurance far more expensive.
  • This reform lets patients buy products that meet their needs and makes insurers more accountable to patients.
3. Encourage Health Care Savings Accounts (HSAs), along the lines of Education Savings Accounts. FlexBenefit accounts could be allowed to rollover at the very least.
  • HSAs reduce health care costs without rationing (cutting Medicare); they also let patients control their own money, decreasing health care spending by 13 percent. Things always cost more when a 3rd party is paying the bill.
  • During 2005 and 2006, traditional insurance rose 7.3 percent annually while lower cost / higher deductable plans combined with HSAs rose only 2.7 percent annually.
4. End abusive medical litigation. Easier said than done, but real tort reform is a must on so many levels.
  • Frivolous litigation drives physicians out of medicine; bringing tens of millions of new patients into the system requires more physicians, not fewer.
  • Frivolous litigation reform lowers cost and improves access to care; Americans spend approximately $124 billion every year because physicians practice defensive medicine.
5. What about the uninsured?
  • We can insure the uninsured without expanding American debt; approximately 25 percent of patients who visit the emergency rooms do not have health care coverage.
  • A system of tax credits can help the uninsured purchase coverage; this would cost approximately $80 billion annually.
  • Doctors taking charity tax deductions by treating indigent patients.

No comments: