2.6.20 / Updates

ICYMI: One-Size-Fits-All Systems ‘Don’t Actually Put The Patient At The Center Of Their Care, Don’t Address Costs’

WASHINGTON – As proponents of one-size-fits-all new government health insurance systems – like Medicare for All, Medicare Buy-in and the public option – push misleading claims about how they would work, Lauren Crawford Shaver, executive director of the Partnership sets the record straight.  In an interview with State of Reform last week, Shaver explained, “they are one-size-fits-all proposals that don’t actually put the patient at the center of their care, don’t address costs, and don’t actually better our current health care system or strengthen what we have today.” 

I think that one of the things that I first ask about proposals that come out is, what is the proposal inherently trying to solve for? …  A lot of these proposals make an assumption that the private market can no longer exist. And we disagree. We think that 180 million Americans already have employer-sponsored coverage and like it and want to keep it.  So, when these proposals come out, does it disrupt that care?  Does it better the care for patients? … And a Medicare for All proposal creates a one-size-fits-all government run system.  And that’s not what patients want and that’s not what 180 million Americans who have employer insurance want.

…  [W]e’re looking to have a very serious conversation on health care as everyone’s proposals shift and change and come from being a couple paragraphs on a website to much more fleshed out plans.  I think one thing you hear from candidates across the country is that they want to build upon our health care system and strengthen it.  It’s not perfect but throwing the baby out with the bath water isn’t a good path forward.  So, we’re going to continue to educate people about what these proposals mean and make sure we’re contributing to the health care conversation for the long run.

Studies Show That Medicare For All Would Cause American Families To Pay More To Wait Longer For Worse Care. 

Unaffordable Costs & Tax Hikes On American Families:

Eliminating Consumer Choice & Control:

  • Medicare for All would mean 180 million Americans lose their employer-provided health coverage and force them into a one-size-fits-all system controlled by politicians. (Census Bureau, 9/12/18; Medicare for All Act (S.119), 4/10/19)
  • “Under a single-payer system that eliminated private insurance entirely … patients would not have a choice of insurer or benefits, and those standardized benefits might not meet the needs of some people.  For example, certain specialty drugs or expensive new treatments, such as gene therapy, might not be covered under a single-payer system.” (Congressional Budget Office, 12/20/19)
  • Under a one-size-fits-all government health insurance system, “participants would not have a choice of insurer or health benefits compared with the options available under the current system, the benefits provided by the public plan might not address the needs of some people.”  (Congressional Budget Office, 5/1/19
  • “Less spending on medical services could also alter manufacturers’ incentive to develop new technologies or providers’ incentive to invest in capital, which could affect patients’ choices over the longer term.” (Congressional Budget Office, 12/20/19)

Reducing Patients’ Access To Quality Care:

  • Medicare for All could result in over 1.2 million fewer doctors and nurses, leading to less access and lower quality care for patients. (FTI Consulting, 1/13/20)
  • According to the study, the reduction of physicians “would be felt most acutely in rural communities already experiencing access challenges … shortages of healthcare workers in rural areas widen existing health disparities and contribute to hospital closures,” serving 60 million Americans. (FTI Consulting, 1/13/20)
  • Under a one-size-fits-all government health insurance system, “patients might face increased wait times and reduced access to care.” (Congressional Budget Office, 5/1/19)
  • “Demand for care might be unmet,” under a one-size-fits-all government health insurance system.(Congressional Budget Office, 12/20/19)

Meanwhile, Studies Reveal New Government-Controlled Health Insurance Systems – Like The Public Option And Medicare Buy-In – Are Not “Moderate” Alternatives To Medicare For All And Could Ultimately Lead To The Same Unaffordable Consequences Over Time As Medicare For All Would Cause Overnight.

Unaffordable Costs & Tax Hikes On American Families:

Eliminating Consumer Choice & Control:

  • The public option could eliminate consumer choice for millions of Americans and “eventually cause the elimination of all private plans in the individual market.”  (FTI Consulting, 11/18/19)
  • After the first 10 years of the public option, more than seven million Americans with private coverage would no longer have coverage through the marketplaces – with two million of those enrollees being forced off their private plans as insurers exit the marketplaces altogether.(FTI Consulting, 11/18/19)
  • The study also warns that the public option could eventually cause the elimination of all private plans in the individual marketplaces, eliminating choice for millions of Americans, even those with the resources or subsidies available to cover their preferred plan. (FTI Consulting, 11/18/19)
  • In fact, the report finds that by 2050, 70 percent of state marketplaces (34 U.S. states) would no longer offer a single private insurance option. (FTI Consulting, 11/18/19)
  • Rural families would be especially hard hit by the public option, the study warns, and could find few if any options available to them. (FTI Consulting, 11/18/19) 

Reducing Patients’ Access To Quality Care:

  • The public option could put more than 1,000 rural U.S. hospitals, serving more than 60 million Americans in 46 states, “at high risk of closure.” (Navigant, 8/7/19)
  • The rural hospitals at high risk represent more than 63,000 staffed beds and 420,000 employees.” (Navigant, 8/7/19)
  • “The availability of a public option could negatively impact access to and quality of care through rural hospitals’ potential elimination of services and reduction of clinical and administrative staff, as well as damage the economic foundation of the communities these hospitals serve.” (Navigant, 8/7/19)
  • “For hospitals, the introduction of a public plan that reimburses providers using Medicare rates would compound financial stresses they are already facing, potentially impacting access to care and provider quality.” (KNG Consulting, 3/12/19)

Read Shaver’s full interview HERE

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