Last U.S. Health Care System post

MB Lewis

MB Lewis

This spring the May flowers got ahead of April showers, but a rainy Sunday is just what I need to study for the HMP 602 final in 48 hours. The CFPH certificate program is a week behind the residential program schedule, but that was a good during the heady days of the debate and passage of reform in March. We got up-to-the-minute news and analysis, and it was truly  exciting.

Now for the brutal cleanup and conclusion: a final exam on our country’s complex health care system. It’s only a third of the course we’re getting tested on, but it includes private insurance, Medicaid (welfare), Medicare (social insurance), quality assessment AND the pharmaceutical industry! I’m reviewing how technological innovation and lifesaving drugs are a proud hallmark of U.S. medical innovation, yet simultaneously major causes of the explosive growth in national health care costs. I’m comparing 2 philosophies for taming wildfire expenses: 1) relying on market-driven strategies or 2) using governmental regulation and intervention to contain rising costs.

If it works as planned, the health care reform will benefit in part from both seemingly opposing strategies. I have my fingers crossed. And I’m proud that the Value-Based Insurance Design principles developed at the University of Michigan are a key component of this health care reform. It’s real public heath: an example of the ounce of prevention that matters a lot.

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