Healthcare Driving The Economy?

At what point do we change the delivery of health care. In 2007 costs were over $4.2 trillion or 17% of the GNP - $7900 per person. That is also a lot of jobs.

The problem that is being debated today is at what level do you stop? Do you adopt a system like Oregon did and pay down only to a certain cost/diagnosis? Do you limit like some countries by the "controllable" behaviors (no care for the obese or smokers)? Age a factor - unless it is your family? Is i the cost of technology and pharmaceuticals. I propose that it is some of everything.

The proposal that is currently being worked on proposes healthcare for all - but what exactly does that mean? Just like the economy, it will not sustained forever at the types of levels that many expect. What is not being addressed is the fact that after age 65 the cost of health care per person doubles.

Costs Per Person (2005) $4,082
Costs Per Person Under Age 65: $3,239
Costs Per Person Aged 45 to 64: $5,233
Costs Per Person For Aged 65+: $9,074

You tell me the answer - I do not believe it can be solved quickly. I also know that without an answer the cost will continue to rise unchecked.


Healthcare Reform : It'll Bring A Smile By Stephen Ambrose, CIO for SubroShare Program

I could not resist this one! I wish I had thought of it. From LinkedIn!

Apparently the American Medical Association has weighed in on the new healthcare reform package.... The Allergists voted to scratch it, but the Dermatologists advised not to make any rash moves. The Gastroenterologists had sort of a gut feeling about it, but the Neurologists thought the Administration had a lot of nerve. The Obstetricians felt they were all laboring under a misconception. Ophthalmologists considered the idea shortsighted Pathologists yelled, "Over my dead body!" while the Pediatricians said, 'Oh, Grow up!' The Psychiatrists thought the whole idea was madness, while the Radiologists could see right through it. Surgeons decided to wash their hands of the whole thing. The Internists thought it was a bitter pill to swallow, and the Plastic Surgeons said, "This puts a whole new face on the matter." The Podiatrists thought it was a step forward, but the Urologists were pissed off at the whole idea. The Anesthesiologists thought the whole idea was a gas, and the Cardiologists didn't have the heart to say no.

Wellness And Prevention - The Next Cost Savings For Business?

Prevention is a boon to business, to the individual and families. 19% of total deaths are attributed to tobacco use. Another 14% are attributed to diet and activity. 50% of total deaths are attributed to changeable behaviors!

In 20008 and dollar terms, gross health care expenditure will rise by an average of $526 per employee, to an average total cost of $9,144. Notably, the survey results suggest that the average cost increase would have been closer to 8%, or about $200 per employee more, if not for
employer efforts to aggressively manage benefit program performance.

Key elements to a comprehensive and an effective Health And Wellness Program, that does not have to be particularly costly are:
  • Health testing
  • Physical fitness activities
  • Lifestyle and behavioral change strategies
  • Prevention and safety strategies
  • Awareness, Health education and support strategies
  • Stress reliever strategies
  • Disease management strategies

What does the employer get out of this? Cost savings are demonstrated by:

  1. Improved productivity (less absenteeism, improved moral, and reduced turnover)
  2. Lower health care costs (depending on how you calculate - Return of $3 to $25 for every $1 per employee annually)
  3. Enhanced coporate and community image

Health And Human Services in the 2010 Healthy People