Category: Health Care

For more information on the Georgia Legislative Policy Forum and to register, click here or copy this link http://bit.ly/1oJq9vN and paste in your browser window. By Benita M. Dodd BENITA DODD For the fifth year in a row, the Georgia Public Policy Foundation and the Conservative Policy Leadership Institute will bring game-changing, market-oriented, limited-government reforms ideas to the state at the Georgia Legislative Policy Forum in Atlanta on September 19. The daylong Forum, which had an attendance in 2013 of about 250 Georgians – legislators, legislative staff, grassroots activists, policy-makers and interested citizens – has been described as “the opening act of the General Assembly.” For the past four years, the theme was, “Wisdom, Justice and Innovation,” a… View Article

Checking Up On Health: August 26, 2014

Health Policy News and Views Compiled by Benita Dodd BENITA DODD Allergies are nothing to sniff at – especially if you’re starting to have trouble breathing! Five hours after I was stung by a wasp, my face was still swelling! I usually try to show my best side in photographs. But, as my sacrifice to good health, to the right is one of my very swollen face a few hours after I was stung under the eye by a wasp Saturday while gardening. I quickly swallowed a couple of antihistamines and sat down to wait. About 45 minutes later, I was at the Walgreen’s MinuteClinic, my face swelling visibly despite a cold compress over my eye. By the time… View Article
By Dr. Brian E. Hill and Wayne Oliver During the next few weeks, many of Americans will receive some very bad news at work or in the mail: Health insurance premiums are expected to skyrocket for 2015 because of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The PwC Health Research Institute projects double-digit rate increases for health insurance plans in Florida, North Carolina and Iowa, for example. With health insurance becoming so unaffordable, many will be wondering why the ACA didn’t take steps to reduce health care costs. One linchpin Washington politicians skipped in addressing the health care crisis was addressing medical malpractice reform. ObamaCare did nothing to protect physicians and hospitals from frivolous lawsuits or to deter the costly practice of… View Article

Checking Up On Health: August 19, 2014

Health Policy News and Views Compiled By Benita M. Dodd BENITA DODD Several friends have raved about the healing/soothing/therapeutic/calming/antidepressant benefits of essential oils, but I’m still not buying them. (Although, if you want to give me some, I’ll gladly try them!) I would love to hear from readers about their experiences, but truth be told, I’m as skeptical about the multilevel marketers’ claims regarding these costly essential oils as I am about the overrated cures that some chiropractors promise. There, I put it out there. And then there’s Whole Foods Market. I was reading about the Affordable Care Act on Forbes.com when up popped a story titled, “The Three Dumbest Things About Whole Foods Market.” If there’s one… View Article

Checking Up On Health: July 15, 2014

Health Policy News and Views Compiled by Benita M. Dodd BENITA DODD Don’t believe the middleman makes a huge difference in health care? Listen carefully the next time you’re at the doctor. I’ve become a believer in direct primary care. It’s a little like a health club membership, where you sign an agreement to use the facility’s services. Unlike the elite concierge doctors of the USA Network show, “Royal Pains,” this affordable model is also called “concierge care for the little guy.” The difference health insurance makes in the price point was reinforced after my recent visit to an imaging center. The assistant offered me the option to file a health insurance claim or pay $130 up front.… View Article

Checking Up On Health: May 20, 2014

Health Policy News and Views Compiled by Benita M. Dodd BENITA DODD Georgia’s engaged hospitals: Kudos to Georgia’s Tanner Medical Center in Villa Rica, which ranks 46th on the list of 100 top hospitals for patient engagement in the inaugural National Patient Engagement Ranking by Becker’s Hospital Review and Axial Exchange. Tanner scored 78 out of 100. Emory University Hospital (Atlanta) scored 74.3and came in 89th. The national ranking evaluated all 3,077 U.S. hospitals’ engagement efforts based on an analysis of publicly available data, including readmissions, patient satisfaction and the extent to which organizations offered information and tools that help engage patients in self care. Telemedicine: ABC News on Monday night had a report on “a brand-new high-tech medical View Article
MIKE KLEINEditor, Georgia Public Policy Foundation By Mike Klein Four years ago Lee Gross saw the medical sands were shifting.  His insurance-based primary care practice near Sarasota, Florida was in danger of extinction unless Gross and his physician partners developed a different strategy.  Medicine, it seems, was also no longer much fun. “Any physician will tell you a lot has changed in medicine in the last ten to fifteen years,” Gross said this week in Atlanta.  “The paperwork gets absolutely crazy.  You’re basically no longer interacting with patients.  You’re just a cog in the wheel doing what the insurance companies are telling you to do.” Gross also saw a real possibility that his entire medical business model would vanish.  “Independent… View Article
Grace-Marie Turner, President, Galen Institute By Grace-Marie Turner and Tyler Hartsfield President Obama promised middle-income families they would not see their taxes go up “one single dime” as a result of ObamaCare. But millions of such Americans are indeed paying to finance the gargantuan health overhaul law through hidden taxes and fees, many of which already are driving up the cost of their medical care and health insurance. In total, the 21 taxes in ObamaCare will extract $1 trillion over a decade, nearly double the $569 billion that Congress’ Joint Committee on Taxation estimated at the time the law passed in 2010. The first wave hits many higher-income people who got a rude awakening about the health law’s new and… View Article

Thinking Outside the ObamaCare Box

By Kelly McCutchen Health care costs threaten to bankrupt our country. Debates over Medicaid expansion, the Medicare “doc fix,” the State of Georgia’s health plan, coverage of autism and so many other health care issues merely shift these costs from one party to another. The time has come for a “let’s go to the moon” challenge that truly addresses the underlying problems. Higher education costs are on a similar trajectory. A few years ago, governors Rick Perry of Texas and Rick Scott of Florida challenged their higher education institutions to design a four-year bachelor’s degree program for $10,000 or less. Not $10,000 a year but $10,000 for all four years. Many schools rose to the challenge, met it and now… View Article

Designing An Alternative to Medicaid Expansion

Key components for an alternative to Medicaid expansion: Catastrophic insurance. A private insurance policy provides catastrophic coverage, protecting individuals (and taxpayers) from large, unexpected expenses and giving individuals peace of mind that they are covered if they need major surgery or need expensive treatment for a condition such as cancer. Private insurance means individuals avoid the problems with many providers refusing to see new Medicaid patients. Reasonable cost sharing. The coverage is not free, but requires reasonable payments of up to 5 percent of income. This limits “crowd out” where individuals who are already paying for insurance drop their private insurance for the “free” government coverage. According to the Census Bureau, 222,000 adults with income below the Federal… View Article

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