At a leading public policy conference, health care reformers met to determine the best path forward in releasing the nation’s health care market from the clutches of government.
Obamacare has done little but increase premiums and deductibles and reduce access to top doctors, concluded leaders at The Heritage Foundation’s annual “Resource Bank” meeting in Austin, Texas on June 2 and 3. Participants discussed ways to help legislators educate their constituents about the rewards of a free-market health care system.
A panel featuring Health Care News co-publisher John Goodman, Joe DeSantis of Gingrich 360, Marie Fishpaw of The Heritage Foundation, Rep. Chip Roy (R – TX), and Kansas State Senator Beverly Gossage (R – District 9) discussed the potential of a “Health Care Contract with America, similar to the “Contract with America” that Republicans signed in 1994 to help them win control of the U.S. House while President Bill Clinton was in office.
Goodman says the reception from think tanks and activists has been positive and input is welcome. A working document has already been created.
Need for Reform is Great
“The spirit of liberty is still alive and well in America,” writes Grace-Marie Turner, founder, and president of the Galen Institute, in the organization’s American Healthcare Choices newsletter.
Turner recalls remarks made in a panel discussion by Rep. Chip Roy (R-Texas).
“Does the average person know that $22,000 a year comes out of their salary to pay for their family’s health insurance policy – plus the $7,000 or $8,000 they pay for their share of the premium?” Turner asks. “If they knew that, do you think that at least some of them might want to see if they could find a better deal?”
Kansas State Sen. Beverly Gossage spoke on the panel about the vilification of short-term health insurance plans by some politicians. Gossage described one patient whose short-term plan covered all but a $2,500 deductible for a $95,000 emergency gall bladder surgery. An Obamacare plan, Gossage told participants, would have charged the patient thousands of dollars more in deductibles and co-pays.
Choice, ownership, control, affordability, portability, quality, and security should be the goals of health care, writes Turner.
“The big secret is that we are paying so much more than we need to for health coverage and care because so much of the spending is controlled, not by us, but by private and public bureaucracies that have no incentives to contain costs,” Turner writes.
AnneMarie Schieber (firstname.lastname@example.org) is the managing editor of Health Care News.