Several years ago, back in 2006, I bought the book, The New Health Insurance Revolution, by Paul Zane Pilzer, and I’m so glad I did, because I wanted to look back and see what health insurance costs were back then, vs. what they are today. It serves as a good reminder that high risk pools did work, and helped keep insurance costs low for the masses of healthy insurance buyers. It also reminds us that high risk pools, while more expensive than insurance plans offered to the healthy, can be offered on a sliding scale of income and still be affordable, even for those with pre-existing conditions. (Note: Pre-ACA, Cover Colorado, for example, was offered on a sliding scale of income. Rates shown in picture below do not display sliding scale discounts). What the ACA did was essentially turn Health insurance into a costly high risk pool for everyone. This is evident by comparing historical insurance costs to the cost of insurance today.
See the following pictures. Rates are based on a 33 year old person with similar individual deductibles.
2006-From The New Health Insurance Revolution
I’ve been following Dave Chase on Twitter for some time now. Dave Chase is the author of https://healthrosetta.org .
If you’ve ever thought you knew how to fix the high cost of American Healthcare, think again. While the problem is complex, it certainly is not insurmountable, but the solution involves plenty of training and education. Dave Chase’s book, CEO’s Guide to Restoring the American Dream is now on preorder, and you don’t need to be a CEO to read it. Any American who wants to part of the solution should take the time to educate themselves on the root causes of health care inflation, and solutions recommended by Dave Chase, and the people who inspired him. Americans who use health care, benefit advisers, politicians, CFOs, CPAs, CEOs, financial advisers, or just any one who might have an interest in working towards a solution together should invest in reading Dave Chase’s non-partisan, practical guide.
Benefit Advisors are currently making a difference, helping employers to drastically lower costs and provide employees with far better benefits than the norm. But every American should invest in obtaining a basic understanding of where we’ve been, and the direction we need to go, to have a healthcare system that surpasses our expectations as health care consumers.
I recommend Dave Chase’s book as a good place to start. Who will join me in spreading the word?
Back in 2006, Price Waterhouse Coopers did an excellent synopsis on what percentage of each healthcare dollar was spent on what. It was a fantastic breakdown, and it’s really difficult now, to find that old document on the internet. But today, I finally found the picture that I’ve been looking for! The breakdown isn’t much different today, so the picture still applies. Costs might even be heavier today on care vs. profit. But this visual, I’ve found to be very helpful, when trying to think through possible solutions to today’s health insurance cost crisis.
Take a look at this picture. What do you see? Given what you see, where do you think the problems with our healthcare system lie, and how would you propose to your congressmen and women to fix it?
My friend, Dr. Robert Nelson, has some suggestions, offered in his blog, The Sovereign Patient: When Did Health-Care Become One Word?