It’s Time To Tackle Unpredictability In Health Care

By The Hon. Donna Christensen, on April 15, 2019

It’s Time To Tackle Unpredictability In Health Care

Read the full op-ed on The Hill

“Americans are almost universally worried about the cost of health care for them and their families, no matter their income level, age, gender, race or political identification. According to a new Ipsos-Consumers for Quality Care (CQC) poll, health care continues to rank highest on a list of perennial concerns over retirement, housing, higher education and child care, regardless of party affiliation.

Leading into the midterm elections, a broad, bipartisan majority of voters wanted a new approach from politicians to tackle costs and ensure greater clarity in the system. While the new Congress and the administration seem to acknowledge these concerns by holding hearings around surprise billing and rising out-of-pocket costs and by requiring hospital pricing to be shared online, there’s been no real progress in addressing patient’s concerns.

With talk of Affordable Care Act (ACA) repeal on the horizon once again and the loosening of requirements around essential health benefits and coverage of pre-existing conditions leading to more junk plans on the market, uncertainty around health-care costs continues to rise.

The pivotal finding in our most recent survey is that Americans ultimately want more predictability in what they are asked to pay for health-care services. They want their hard-earned dollars to go farther for them and they may even be willing to pay more upfront for better value and quality of care.

In fact, when given a choice, 81 percent would rather pay more on a monthly basis for a health plan that has comprehensive coverage with minimal fees when they need treatments, versus just 19 percent who would rather pay less on a monthly basis for a health plan with skimpy coverage and large fees when treatments are needed.”