It is no secret health care costs in this country are astronomical.
While there are amazing people doing an amazing job in the health care industry, there is reportedly $200 million worth of fraud in Montana's medical industry every year.
The cost of healthcare would be dramatically reduced and more people in need could be better served if fraud, abusive overcharges, and waste were eliminated. Forcing everyone to buy the government mandated insurance or pouring more public funding into it is not going to clean up the fraud or lower the costs.
As we work towards fixing the current healthcare system in America my goal is a health care system which encourages good decisions at home, provides high quality care when needed, and offers transparent consumer pricing which is fair and reasonable.
It is is critical that Americans can afford to receive proper medical care when they really need it. A devastating illness or accident should not bankrupt any family. Rather than force insurance providers to pay for every little pill we take, which drives up the cost, we need to free these companies up so they can offer choices which include low cost protection against major medical events. For most of us, the state of our health is a result of our choices. Except for those who are truly unable to do so, taking care of one’s health begins with making wise decisions.
Fraud and abuse must be eliminated. Frivolous lawsuits must be stopped. Medical services and product pricing should be transparent so consumers know the costs BEFORE they buy, and the system should provide incentives to the consumers who shop wisely. Industry-wide competition should be encouraged so providers are motivated to offer the services and pricing necessary to earn your business.
If industry and government genuinely worked together to achieve fair and transparent pricing, eliminate fraud, increase the personal medical knowledge of each citizen, encourage preventative care, foster free market competition, and promote healthy life choices, we would see lower costs and a healthier society. Unfortunately, we see much of the opposite occurring today.
Without serious, sensible reforms, pouring millions/billions of dollars into government funded programs which are already fiscally irresponsible and economically unsustainable will not solve the problem. In fact, the more government has gotten involved in the medical industry over the last several decades, the higher medical costs have gone - in large part due to waste, fraud, abuse, lack of free market competition, and lack of consumer control.
We should consider what has worked well in the past, and take a look at what is working in other countries today. Currently America is not first in healthcare worldwide according to this 2010 study of seven industrialized nations:
There should be more focus in America on the benefits of a healthy lifestyle, including regular exercise and focus on nutrition and the foods we eat. By making healthy choices it is believed that many illnesses can be avoided. As conservatives we understand that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
talks about simple, low-tech and low-cost ways to take advantage of the body's natural desire to heal itself. Dean Ornish is a clinical professor at UCSF and founder of the Preventive Medicine Research Institute. He's a leading expert on fighting illness -- particularly heart disease with dietary and lifestyle changes. Please enjoy his TED video:
William Li heads the Angiogenesis Foundation, a nonprofit that is re-conceptualizing global disease fighting. Here is another TED video where he presents a new way to think about treating cancer and other diseases: anti-angiogenesis, preventing the growth of blood vessels that feed a tumor. The crucial first (and best) step: Eating cancer-fighting foods that cut off the supply lines and beat cancer at its own game. Funding the research of brilliant people and then sharing information will logically lead to better healthcare in America through prevention, saving billions of dollars per month.