Can the free market lower healthcare costs? This doctor’s model clinic shows it can.
Obamacare is now the law of the land and many of you are signed up either through your employer or may have signed on and purchased your care through an exchange. Most doctors have had their fees sliced by insurance carriers, have been told what to do by them and been told what they will pay for, what they will not and how much, yet each year our healthcare premiums go up. This year, the doctors themselves sometimes found that Obamacare made their old healthcare plan obsolete and as a result, found themselves looking for a compliant healthcare plan that is often hundreds of dollars more with more of the cost of care being paid for by them and less of it being paid for by the plan. This new math we are supposed to believe is because health care costs have gone up again as a percentage of GDP (http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/business/2014/03/30/health-care-spending/7007987/).
If you believe the rhetoric, without questioning how the costs go up, the insurers pay less, the providers do not usually reap the benefit and the unaffordability of the affordable healthcare plans on the NJ exchange (a similar plan to the one I have is over $400 more on the NJ exchange for my family), in light of Stephen Brills article, you may be part of the problem without knowing it. As the deductibles go higher, you will need to pay for the care yourself before the insurer kicks in their amount that they are responsible for, and often the negotiated fees are ridiculous but as a consumer, we have no way of renegotiating this. This is of course the problem with a healthcare system filled with inefficiencies that is a monopoly supported by the insurance system.
A doctor at the Surgery Center of Oklahoma is looking to change this and break from the old habits of medical care in this country, which is often twice the price or more than in other developed nations. Their model consists of an accredited healthcare center that offers a fixed price for the case, and transparency of their pricing model. There is no $40 aspirin here. Their philosophy makes healthcare simple, understandable and affordable. They are also looking to expand their idea across the country taking back health care from an overweight beast that offers few assurances but guarantees to drill a hole in your wallet and families finances, which in itself makes many people ill.
If you want to know the prices for procedures, click on this link here. Price transparency has arrived. While they are not giving their care away, they are pricing their care in a way that we can understand it, and they have a good reputation for doing this. In my opinion, this model should catch on. Of course, the costs of living and working in Oklahoma is less than here, however how much more should it cost here?
Check out the article here. Look out Obamacare, there is a new model for care that uses the free market to keep care affordable under the affordable care act. This may be just what the American healthcare monopoly has always needed.
Oklahoma Doctors vs. Obamacare
Surgery center provides free-market medicine.
Jim Epstein | November 15, 2012
Three years ago, Dr. Keith Smith, co-founder and managing partner of the Surgery Center of Oklahoma, took an initiative that would only be considered radical in the health care industry: He posted online a list of prices for 112 common surgical procedures. The 51-year-old Smith, a self-described libertarian, and his business partner, Dr. Steve Lantier, founded the Surgery Center 15 years ago, after they became disillusioned with the way patients were treated at St. Anthony Hospital in Oklahoma City, where the two men worked as anesthesiologists. In 1997, Smith and Lantier bought the shell of a former surgical center with the aim of creating a for-profit facility that could deliver first-rate care at a fraction of what traditional hospitals charge.
The major cause of exploding U.S. heath care costs is the third-party payer system, a text-book concept in which A buys goods or services from B that are paid for by C. Because private insurance companies or the government generally pick up most of the tab for medical services, patients don’t have the normal incentive to seek out value.
The Surgery Center’s consumer-driven model could become increasingly common as Americans look for alternatives to the traditional health care market—an unintended consequence of Obamacare. Patients may have no choice but to look outside the traditional health care industry in
Read more here
What do you think? As always, I value your opinion.