CT papers feature health reform

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The Day has a well-considered editorial today on health reform, centering on the Cleveland Clinic. The President has publicly cited the Cleveland Clinic as an example of exceptional care at lower cost. The editorial points out that what we need is a revolution — we need to reform our health care system, not just insurance markets. We have to change incentives, putting providers on salary as the Cleveland Clinic does. The article also urges bundling services into one payment to discourage over-utilization, consolidating providers into seamless systems of care to promote accountability, provide incentives for people to manage their own health, and improving transparency and competition – on costs AND quality. “If we insure everyone without reforming the delivery process, the costs will be ruinous.” Well said.

Today’s Hartford Courant features just the physician perspective on health care reform. Issues raised include lack of support for primary care, paperwork and an entire section devoted to medical malpractice. While the article notes evidence that defensive medicine is a very small part of rising health costs, that fact is buried. What’s interesting in the article is that CT hospitals claim that they lost more money on Medicaid patients than the uninsured in 2007.
Ellen Andrews