Archive for September, 2009

A Public Option for Failure

Up until this week, I had been rather agnostic about the public option.  Before looking at the philosophical issues: should the government set prices in the health care market place? What level of competition should there be in the health insurance marketplace?  Should a massive government entity be involved in the health insurance marketplace? There was always a basic question: would it work?
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The Drama of Perfection

The circus is in town again and the most remarkable thing happened: one of the acrobats missed.  While trying to jump rope on high wire above the stage one of the acrobats missed and barely caught himself before falling into the safety netting.  Rather than spoil the show, catching and then pulling himself back up on the wire were an added treat and as impressive as the rest of performance.

But shouldn’t we expect perfection?  Don’t the acrobats work eight shows a week and rehearse countless months before touring?  This isn’t dancing with the stars, this is supposed to be a professional show.
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Lost in the Humana Outrage

What has been lost in the outrage over Humana writing to Medicare Advantage members is that this type of dilema will happen more often if anything close to the current reform packages.  One problem with public private partnerships is that corporations have not only the usual marketplace levers of competition prices, quality, and customer service, but also the levers of politics and lobbying as well.  Will plans in the exchange need to sign gag orders to prevent them from informing members when subsidies are going to reduced?

Disclaimer: I am employed by Ingenix a subsidiary of United Health Group and these are my views and not the views of Ingenix or United Health.

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