How "Fair Trade" Biz Benefits Can End the Opioid Epidemic
Matt McCord – MD - Founder of Health Value Solutions
In the ten years since the Affordable Care Act, we have seen no real movement to value what the famous law promised. Further, Bloomberg wrote, “take-home wages have stagnated for more than 40 years because employers shell out so much more for worker health insurance.” Health care is eating wages.
To add insult to injury, one common cost-saving strategy employed by employers is shifting more of these rising benefit costs onto workers in the form of copays and deductibles. Workers cannot afford these added out-of-pocket liabilities. Consequently, they avoid care which makes them "functionally" uninsured.
There is a movement of enlightened Benefit Advisors, called the Health Rosetta, that eschews the status quo arrangements and business models. To help employers buy care like the largest corporations in America, these new strategies include Advanced Primary Care, a value-based reimbursement environment, and high-performance specialty services. This allows employers to buy on value, save money and improve their worker’s health and care experience.
A tragic example of our broken US healthcare system is our opioid crisis.
This is a uniquely American problem 30 years in the making. This has claimed at least half a million lives and half a trillion dollars. It has eroded the blue-collar workforce to the breaking point. Opioid dependence begins, innocently enough, with a doctor’s prescription. Solving this crisis will require a multi-pronged effort AND it should start where it begins; by minimizing opioid use in acute care.
Opioid sparing and opioid-free surgery may be a great opportunity for providers to engage directly with employers and enter High-Performance Specialty Care or Centers of Excellence care arrangements. There is much interest in opioid-free or sparing surgery programs from large buyer organizations. What providers will step forward and provide this advanced care?
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