Insurance company profits or losses are based on the cost of care for the patient populations they insure. Therefore, our insurance rates are based upon the cost of care for these populations. No matter how you slice up the population into different risk groups, the total cost of care is how the rates will be adjusted.
We are being duped by the politicians who have us focused on the insurance plans and not the cost of healthcare services that are driving up premiums regardless of the payer.
We need to lower the per capita cost of healthcare. The five countries with the highest per capita costs in 2014 were United States, $9,024, 17.1 percent of Gross Domestic Product; Switzerland, $6,935, 11.7 percent of GDP; Norway, $6,6567, 9.7 percent of GDP; Netherlands, $5,343, 10.9 percent of GDP and Germany, $5,267, 11.3 percent of GDP. If the U.S. had matched any of these per capita costs, the savings would have been $662 billion, $779 billion, $1.16 trillion or $1.19 trillion.
World Health Organization ranking of health care systems by country: U.S., 37th; Switzerland, 20th; Norway, 11th; Netherlands, 17th, and Germany, 25th. France is ranked 1st with a per capita cost of $4,367, 11.5 percent of GDP. All of these countries, except the U.S., have a form of universal health insurance (mandated coverage, single payer, two-tier systems, etc.). They are insuring all their people while we are excluding people and paying more per capita.
Never miss a local story.
A Harvard study concluded 62 percent of personal bankruptcies in the U.S. are caused by medical expenses.
To achieve per capita cost reduction, we will need to elect politicians who are willing to support the people, as the Constitution says, “promote the general welfare.”