"Dear Dr. Feld
If your ideal Medical Savings Account is such a good idea why has it not become more popular?"
The reason is simple. The Ideal Medical Savings Account does not exist as a healthcare insurance option. The healthcare insurance industry has obfuscated the purpose of creating financial incentives for consumers with the offer of Health Savings Accounts.
The Health Savings Accounts keep premium dollars in the healthcare insurance industry’s control at the end of the year. Consumers are able to use unspent money on healthcare deductible in the future.
The Ideal Medical Saving Account puts the money not spent in a separate tax-free trust for consumers’ retirement. The logic is to reward consumers for good health financially and to encourage consumers to be responsible for their health and healthcare choices.
The goal is not to reward the healthcare insurance company it is to reward consumers. The healthcare insurance industry is controlling the consumer’s money for its own profit.
Despite its faults HSA’s are becoming very popular. It is the fastest growing healthcare insurance product in America.
President Obama wants to eliminate HSAs. His goal is to increase government control over consumers’ healthcare choices. He does not want consumers to control their healthcare dollars. He wants to control consumers.
The healthcare insurance industry’s goal is to maximize its profit. It is not concerned about the consumer’s health. The more consumers in the healthcare system the more premium dollars the healthcare insurance industry controls.
Using the power of lobbying and the influence of lobbyists it has been able to rig the game against the consumer.
"Wendell Potter, former senior executive at Cigna turned whistle-blower, has written that the insurance industry has worked to kill "any reform that might interfere with insurers' ability to increase profits" by engaging in extensive and well funded, anti-reform campaigns."
"This is nothing new. However, as consumers (patients in all three categories) the Internet and social networking can empower us to have more influence over the politicians than lobbyists."
"After all, we are the people who give them their jobs. Some might say this is a naïve view. However, recent events have shown the effect of People Power and its ability to disrupt the establishment and its lobbyists.
The industry, however, "goes to great lengths to keep its involvement in these campaigns hidden from public view," including the use of "front groups." Indeed, in a 1998 effort to successfully kill the Patient Bill of Rights at that time, “the insurers formed a front group called the Health Benefits Coalition to kill efforts to pass a Patients Bill of Rights.
While it was billed as a broad-based business coalition that was led by the National Federation of Independent Business and included the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the Health Benefits Coalition in reality got the lion’s share of its funding and guidance from the big insurance companies and their trade associations."
The question is why would the National Federation of Independent Business or the U.S. Chamber of Commerce do this? They either don’t understand the healthcare insurance industry’s motives or they received grant money from the healthcare insurance industry. Both groups are working against the benefit of it own people.
"Like most front groups, the Health Benefits Coalition was set up and run out of one of Washington’s biggest P.R. firms. The P.R. firm provided all the staff work for the Coalition. The tactics worked. Industry allies in Congress made sure the Patients’ Bill of Rights would not become law.""
Obamacare and the Democratic congress have also yielded to the demands of the healthcare insurance industry. President Obama’s goal is to control all medical decisions for patients to keep healthcare costs down. Most advocates of Obamacare overlook this fact.
President Obama’s individual mandated purchase of healthcare insurance would increase the number healthcare industry’s customers. Its profits would increase.
Medicare and Medicaid are totally dependent on the healthcare insurance industry for administrative services. This results in keeping the healthcare insurance industry in control of healthcare spending. The 2.5% overhead for Medicare and Medicaid continuosly repeated by government officials is completely bogus.
The healthcare insurance industry receives at least 30% of every Medicare and Medicaid dollar spent.
The administrative services costs are supposed to be no more than 15%. However, large sums of administrative costs are applied to direct patient care. Each administrative cost has a profit center attached to it.
These profits center increases the healthcare industry’s profits. In turn the salaries of the executives increase.
The Ideal Medical Savings Account eliminates all these layers of bureaucracy, profits and abuses.
It is a perfect opportunity for “People Power” to demand through social networks that the Ideal Medical Saving Account be added to healthcare insurance choices.
The Ideal Medical Savings Account puts the power back in consumers’ hands.
Neither traditional insurance plans or Medicare or Medicaid provide financial incentives for patient to be responsible for their disease nor their healthcare needs.
Financial incentive for all categories of patients (consumers) can serve to increase adherence to physician’s treatment instructions.
Financial incentives can stimulate consumers to be educated consumers of both healthcare and medical care.
Financial incentives can serve to incentivize patients to become professors of their chronic disease. Self-management can avoid many emergency room visits and hospitalizations.
Instant adjudication of claims can decrease many of the excessive administrative costs.
The Ideal Medical Savings Account is simple and transparent to consumers.
IMSAs revives the patient physician relationship. It drives the government and the healthcare insurance industry to the edge of the medical care transaction. It disrupts the hairball and will instantly disrupt the food chain that is failing under the weight of healthcare costs.
The Ideal Medical Savings Account is a perfect healthcare insurance product if deployed properly. Social networks must be formed to demand its availability in order to permit consumers’ (patients) to drive the healthcare system.
Social networks on other levels can force physicians to be more competitive.
The result would be a reduction in the healthcare system’s cost while eliminating administrative abuse, waste and fraud.
The opinions expressed in the blog “Repairing The Healthcare System” is, mine and mine alone
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