Archive for June, 2009

HEALTH CARE CONUNDRUM

Wednesday, June 24th, 2009

In my book “Fortune & Freedom” The Entrepreneur’s Guide to Success”, I note in Part IV that identifying the problem before solving it is priority number one. I quote my middle school math teacher who said: “If I had ten minutes to solve a problem, I would spend eight minutes reading it.” So what is the problem we intend to solve with the proposed new Health Care Legislation? Is it covering people who do not have Health Care Insurance? Covering people who do not want health insurance? Or is it cost?

The President at various times says it is both, and that the present high cost of health care is caused by the profits of the for-profit insurance companies (not all providers are for-profit organizations). Some politicians such as Robert Reich assert that government competition to private providers will bring down the cost. (If you believe that, I have a bridge in Brooklyn I want to sell you – but back to the subject at hand). So what is the problem we are trying to solve?

And, of course, the above is only talking about the evidence of the problem, not its causes. So once we decide whether we are solving the problem of cost or coverage, we then need to identify the drivers, the problems that cause high cost or spotty coverage. Only after these drivers are defined and agreed to can we start to craft a solution.

Have you heard the phrase “A solution in search of a problem”? We need to be careful what we wish for. Our wish might be granted.

Jim