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    Who are the NERD fund donors Mr Snyder?

    Raise the curtain.

    Dems' health care scheme expensive, inefficient, say local doctors and Free Market advocates

    By Nick, Section News
    Posted on Wed Jul 01, 2009 at 11:43:40 AM EST
    Tags: Health care, single-payer, socialized medicine, Hoogendyk, Heartland Institute, AFP, Mackinac, Consumers for Health Care Choices (all tags)

    Consumer driven health care isn't only better for your health, it's better for your pocketbook, too.  That was the message delivered by a coalition of doctors and free market advocates who Wednesday convened in Grand Rapids a roundtable discussion about "the Future of Health care in America."  The event was sponsored by Consumers for Health Care Choices, the Heartland Institute, Americans for Prosperity and the Mackinac Center for Public Policy.

    According to Dr. Mark O'Brien, the status quo represents a true "us versus them" battle pitting responsible doctors and their patients against "big business, big government, big hospitals, big insurance companies and the big media."

    Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) and Health Reimbursement Arrangements give health care consumers more control over how much is spent on their health care and how it is provided.  That is in stark contrast with the current system where insurance companies and government providers often make the calls.

    Medicare's current unfunded liability stands at $38 trillion, ore more than $335,000 per American household.  More frightening, the Heartland Institute reports it is anticipated that Medicare will consume half the federal budget by the year 2035.  Individual and corporate income tax rates would have to rise by 90 percent to finance projected Medicare costs through 2050.

    The biggest reason?  Neither the consumer nor the supplier pay any attention to the price.

    Read on...

    "Health care is different from everything else we buy," said Michael Raupp, a consultant specializing in HSAs.  "There is less of an incentive (for providers) to work with the person who is receiving the service than there is to work for the person paying the bill."

    Suggestions for changing the inarguably broken status quo differ.  President Barack Obama and the Democrats in Washington are currently advocating a nationalized health care system that erases money saving options while demanding taxpayers foot the bill across the board and inserting the federal government into health care decisions.  

    Consumer driven health care is being largely ignored.

    HSAs work by taking cash that might otherwise be spent on insurance policies and instead depositing it into accounts accessible directly by the patient. Patients are then empowered to make decisions with their doctors about health care using their own money, saving what they don't spend and literally experiencing the financial results.

    A typical employer might pay $1,000 a month for a family's health insurance. By spending only 65 percent of that money on an insurance policy with a higher premium (in the event of serious medical issues) and transferring $350 monthly into a tax free health savings account employees are rewarded for making healthy choices in their own lives, the panel argued.  Just as importantly, consumer driven health care will drive down costs.

    The price of health insurance plans with HSAs is 25 percent to 40 percent less than conventional insurance, and the rate of annual increase is just one-third the rate of HMOs and PPOs.  Further, health care can be less expensive and of higher quality if regulations against new and innovative services were removed.

    Despite the sundry health and financial benefits, consumer choice reform remains elusive while additional barriers to affordability are added regularly.  

    "Whatever decisions will be made in Washington, many health care policy decisions are also made at the state level," said Jack McHugh, a policy analyst with the Mackinac Center for Public Policy.  Regulations, certifications and red tape like Michigan's "Certificate of Need" program drive up prices even further.

    Former state Representative Jack Hoogendyk explained that the best hope for change lies with citizens flexing electoral muscle with their political representatives.  "Politicians respond to two things," Hoogendyk said.  "Votes and dollars."

    "It's going to require groups to rally around the truth to tell people what we're headed towards with a nationalized health care system."

    < Some Detroit Leaders Providing Hope | A note about these incessant server outages... >

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    I like the direstion that... (none / 0) (#1)
    by KG One on Wed Jul 01, 2009 at 03:16:15 PM EST
    ...Arizona is taking on this concept.

    Sadly, with a democratic majority in the governor's mansion and Michigan House, it probably wouldn't see the light of day here in Michigan.

    But a ballot petition???

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