Saturday, April 22, 2017
How the Market Is Already Repealing Obamacare
We are now in the middle of a pause regarding health care. Trump has allowed the Republican party to fall on its sword and eliminate its scheme the only way possible when everyone is attempting to cater to the insurance industry who is paying them.
The present Obamacare regime is a completely unsustainable financial disaster and the Repubicans and Trump now have cover while everyone figures out just how impossible it all is.
What is coming is some form of universal healthcare which we can safely assume will be similar to the Canadian solution and possibly attached to a new VAT split between the federal government and the States who will then manage the system providing ample competition for pricing at at least one critical level.
Trump has actually said the words in passing of course, without ever spelling it out. Thus he is set up to claim this was his plan all along. Just go check. When it comes to the press there is one born every minute.
The role of the insurance industry is unclear but it is there that Trump may be able to find us a real surprise..
How the Market Is Already Repealing Obamacare
Wednesday, April 05, 2017
There’s a common misconception that if you’re opposed to government services, programs and/or departments, then you’re opposed to building roads, education, people getting affordable health care and even people taking care of the sick and elderly. These misconceptions are becoming more apparent as the free market offers solutions and options using innovation and technology, as the government continues to fall in on itself.
Six months into the pregnancy, we received a letter explaining that due to the changes in the law, our policy would no longer cover maternity services.
I continue to be amazed at the ingenuity of people and individuals working toward solutions in the marketplace, in spite of government. Over time government has assumed more and more control over medical decisions that individuals make everyday.
My Own Experience
I have paid my dentist out of pocket for many years and had private insurance for major medical only. In 2011, my wife and I were expecting our first child and had private health insurance which was slowly being limited more and more by regulations from the Affordable Care Act and Patient Protection Act. It was dreadful!
Six months into the pregnancy, we received a letter explaining that due to the changes in the law, our policy would no longer cover maternity or OB-GYN services. This meant that our insurance would no longer pay for anything related to the birth of our daughter. We searched and shopped for insurance that would help cover the cost of the hospital and birth, but the more government regulations and controls were placed on the market, the more difficult it became to actually get affordable medical insurance and health care.
We spoke with our doctor about it and found that by avoiding insurance altogether and paying the doctor directly, it reduced all costs associated with pregnancy by 60%. We avoided the government-burdened insurance market and paid the doctor directly.
This model of doctors and patients actually working out agreements and paying a flat fee in exchange for medical services is actually very effective. If we could only bypass the government regulations and laws on health care, more people would get better service at a more affordable rate.
One awesome example of markets finding ways around the government’s stronghold on medical services is the Surgery Center of Oklahoma. In order to run their own practice with the least amount of government interference as possible, two doctors formed this practice 15 years ago. The goal was to eliminate the inefficiencies that accompany hospital networks and Medicare/Medicaid networks in order to run their own practice. The practice has done so well, that it has grown to over 40 doctors now.
It is no secret to anyone that the pricing of surgical services is at the top of the list of problems in our dysfunctional healthcare system. Bureaucracy at the insurance and hospital levels, cost shifting and the absence of free market principles are among the culprits for what has caused surgical care in the United States to be cost prohibitive. As more and more patients find themselves paying more and more out of pocket, it is clear that something must change. We believe that a very different approach is necessary, one involving transparent and direct pricing.”
This has allowed them the ability to perform the best quality surgeries at the lowest and most transparent cost. All of their procedures and costs appear on their website. By bringing this level of transparency to the public, it has forced a price war for surrounding hospitals to post prices for procedures, something that is often hidden. This has brought costs down in surrounding areas.
Exiting the rat race of hospital networks and eliminating acceptance of government payments has allowed them to cut the cost and provide a better service.
In spite of what government does, people around the country are finding ways to lower costs and raise quality in the most competitive and realistic manners.
Flat Fee Memberships
The difficulties with getting health care at affordable rates come not from marketplace inadequacies, but from government regulations.
Another great example, are physician’s offices like Irmo Primary Care, Gold Standard Pediatrics and many others that are starting flat fee pricing for memberships and monthly medical services called Direct Primary Care. These practices are helping to once again bring patients and doctors together without interference from government and bureaucratic middlemen. I love streamlining services!
Dr. Bryan Hill, a South Carolina pediatrician, opened his direct primary care practice in September. “Instead of accepting insurance for routine visits and drugs, these practices charge a monthly membership fee that covers most of what the average patient needs, including visits and drugs at much lower prices.”
It’s sad that most of the difficulties with getting good health care at affordable rates come not from inadequacies in the marketplace, but from the many regulations by central planners in government.
History has shown us that free-market forces have the ability to lower costs and increase quality while fostering new growth and innovation. It puts the power in the hands of consumers, where it should be. If government would just get out of the way, then the free-market can fix the problems with healthcare.