April 5, 2017 – Healthcare Reform


Anchor lead:  Now that the ACA hasn’t been repealed, how can we change healthcare to be less expensive? Elizabeth Tracey reports

What is the impact of the ACA on various states? The Commonwealth Fund recently examined the issue and found wide variation in healthcare coverage. Given that the ACA remains standing, at least for now, how can we change our healthcare system to become more equitable? Mike Klag, dean of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, has an indea.

Klag: There’s a lot of waste and inefficiency in the system. People talk about fraud, but my concern is not fraud it’s inefficiency.  If you look at the number of payers we have the work that a provider has to go through to submit bills for the number of payers using different forms, different methods, then at how those different payers process those bills its incredible.  We can argue about what the overhead is but its very clear that the overhead for private insurers is at least twice as much as it is for Medicare.  :29

Klag says Switzerland has a system of a number of private insurers but a single mechanism for submitting bills, which he believes would result in huge savings domestically. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.