DownsizeDC has a post entitled Complexity, Simplified that promises to make our national issue with health care reform understandable. And they deliver on that promise. They say more than this, but it all boils down to these few statements:
But we think the complexity can be simplified to two simple questions:
- For whom does your doctor work?
- Do you pay for your health insurance directly?
If your doctor tailors his or her care to the policies of your insurance company, or some government program, then you don’t really have a doctor who works for you, and health care hasn’t really been reformed.
You’ll know health care has really been reformed when the following things are true…
- You and your doctor deal with your health insurance provider as rarely as you currently do with your car insurance company
- Doctors post their prices, and compete with each other based on price and quality
It’s really that simple. As long as insurance policies and/or government programs fund most of your health care, doctors will work for them and not for you.
The same holds true for health insurance. As long as our health care coverage comes mostly from employer controlled insurance or the government, we won’t have a competitive health insurance market, and the cost of both insurance and health care will grow constantly.
When Americans care about the impact that their use of health care has on their insurance premiums in the same way that they care about the impact that speeding tickets and minor scrapes have on their car insurance, you’ll know that our health care system has really been reformed.
There – in two questions to ask, two systemic changes to watch for, and two paragraphs decribing what real reform would look like – is the entire health care issue.