Healthcare in Crisis
Clearly, America is caught at a crossroads. We are now trapped between two ideological positions. Neither can find ground for compromise because as a nation the art of tolerance has been lost. Nowhere is this seen more than in the current debate over healthcare reform. This is why we often say, “The only thing that we, as Americans, tolerate today is intolerance!”
What is offered on this website are the identification of the fundamental problems and a set of proposals that encapsulate pragmatic solutions. Proposals that are consistent with the goals, objectives and principles that we have identified as key to acceptance of any resolution.
There are Solutions
The fixes will require quite a bit of work, much debate and a healthy dose of tolerance. In the end, we can find compromise that will yield a much simpler, stronger, efficient and appropriate healthcare system for Americans to get the care they need in crisis and, the care they want by choice. It is the assured concept of an effective safety-net for all, tightly integrated with American’s need for choice, that holds the key. Both simply cannot exist without integration, as they become predatory and consuming of each other. They must exist in a manner that systemically provides certain controls, checks and balances. Price certainty, transparency, portability and effectiveness need to be codified as requirements of any healthcare marketplace.
At the same time, effective allocation of appropriate regulation, oversight and responsibility at the federal, state and individual level also need to be integrated into any system. Any solution must provide an effective safety net for all the HELPLESS, while filtering out the CLUELESS – the inadvertently wasteful, and the WORTHLESS – fraudsters that purposefully game and steal from the system. This sounds difficult to do but, in reality it is much more simple that we would have thought. It is based on tighter integration between the four legs of the healthcare continuum: The Participant – what we used to call patients, The Providers – people that provide care, The Sponsors – people that pay for care, and additionally a new role of Facilitator – people that help others find, understand, coordinate both care and the means to pay for it.
who inadvertently significantly increase costs and utilization of scarce resources – and the fraudsters – who purposely game the system in order to inappropriately receive disproportionate and unnecessary gain while also consuming available resources from those who desperately need them. Finally, the solution should, at its safety net, basic care level, provide the same access, scope and treatment options for all, regardless of income or means, with no additional hidden costs, taxes, fees or shifting of costs from one system to the other.
The purpose of our efforts is to first clearly identify and explain the underlying problems in our healthcare system and then to offer pragmatic solutions to these issues. To this end, we have developed a Whitepaper that explores the fundamental problems in detail and proposes a series of pragmatic solutions.
We are producing a series of five one page summaries that will address the fundamental problems and solutions. The first are are already available in the Summary Sheets area. We have designed these for you to be able to forward to people who need a quick description of the issue(s) and do not have time to read the whitepaper.
For a more in-depth look at the issues, we have developed a series of Articles, here we explain the initial misunderstandings we have about our healthcare system. (See Introduction to Our Real Healthcare System.) We explain why, and how, what we believe about the cost of healthcare is wrong. (See The Plague of Myths: Healthcare Costs Too Much) We explain why our expectations of care are so far removed from the care we actually receive in The Plague of Myths: Healthcare, it’s Good for What Ails You!. We alo discuss how our obsession with living longer has significant ramifications for us in healthcare costs and species viability in The Plague of Myths: We Can, and Should Live Forever! We have a number of additional articles in development.
When it comes to America’s, so called, Healthcare System, one of the biggest reasons that most of the attempts to “fix” our healthcare system have consistently yielded more unintended consequences than benefits is that we are treating the symptoms of our disease not the disease itself. We have a number of misconceptions about our healthcare system and the first is that we believe that it is a system. It’s not! It never has been. What we think of as our healthcare system is nothing more than a disjointed, tangled collection of practices, methods, procedures, policies, laws and guidelines that have developed over the past 200 years.
We Believe It Is Up To Us All
We believe that the solutions proposed within this site will fit neatly into a comprehensive approach that Americans will be able to embrace. We do not expect everyone to like every solution proposed in the system but, we do believe in the end these solutions as they are designed fit closely together to solve for a marketplace that will provide Americans with an affordable, cost effective, efficient, fair and appropriate market, and safety net, to get the healthcare they need while preserving the options for a choice based system to get the care they want. This is not to be seen as “The Solution,” but as a series of solutions that are interconnected. These ideas are not inviolate and will surely change. To achieve the goal that we seek, will require a Franklin style compromise, either from a renewed interest in bipartisan, bicameral solutions in Washington DC or from the real power-base of America — the American People.
If You Want Change, There Are Steps You Can Take to Get It!
We all can play a role in solving this dilemma. It starts with getting the word out, getting others to read the ideas that will be flowing onto these pages in the next few days, weeks and months. If you want to help make this change, then get your friends, neighbors, associates, family, and political representatives to be on the same page. Ask them to come to this site and read the articles or the more detailed draft version of the whitepaper available on the menu above. Much work has been done but, there is still much work to be done. This whitepaper is still a draft in the open comment period. It will be further modified based on feedback and additional work that is currently underway.