Daily, Coloradans face a looming health care crisis with skyrocketing premiums, hefty deductibles, escalating co-pays and co-insurance, and waning federal support for Medicaid and ACA subsidies. The situation will only worsen. We need “shelter from the storm” as the current system crumbles.
One way forward is with a state plan that negotiates drug prices, lowers costs, and covers everyone — giving us all needed relief from overpriced private health insurance and price-gouging drug companies. But there are other proposals being floated this election year: a publicly owned insurance company operating alongside the private, an expanded marketplace of private companies with state subsidies for low-income people, or a public/private mix that covers all.
Rather than have a fact-free debate about what is best, let’s put all these plans to the test by taking a hard look at them.
Rep. Edie Hooton (Boulder) has proposed the Health Care Cost Analysis Act of 2018 to do just that. Her bill would create an independent body to vet these plans as to cost, coverage, and other criteria. When the results come in, we’ll know how to move forward.
Call your representatives today and urge them to support!
The Health Care Cost Analysis Act of 2018
(and here are some talking points on why.)
- Health care costs continue to rise at unsustainable levels. They exceed the rate of economic growth in the United States, and require increasingly large portions of the state budget.
- Recent polls show access to affordable health care is a major concern for a substantial majority of Americans from all demographics.
- Colorado’s rural residents pay much higher premiums than urban residents for health insurance and often lack access to adequate health care services.
- According to a recent Colorado Health Institute study, approximately 350,000 Coloradans lack health insurance and 850,000 more are underinsured, meaning they have health insurance but with unaffordable deductibles, co-pays, and co-insurance.
- Coloradans need facts to determine the most cost-effective method of financing health care that ensures that all Coloradans have access to adequate and affordable care.
The Health Care Cost Analysis Act of 2018 establishes a task force that will hire an analyst to provide information on the impact of four models for health care reform.
Three of the four options to be studied would keep the multi-payer insurance system, while one would not:
- Public Option — adds a publicly owned insurance option to the Connect for Health Colorado marketplace;
- Multi-payer Universal Health Care — expands health care insurance to cover everyone in Colorado;
- Public Private Universal Health Care — covers all Coloradans either with commercial insurance or publicly owned insurance;
- Publicly Funded/Privately Delivered Universal Health Care — covers all Coloradans with a publicly funded/privately delivered health care system.
Coloradans need facts and data to find out which model(s) for containing costs will best fix the problems in the health care system, save the most money, and fit best with our values.