In the following article discussing newly elected Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis's views on health care among other challenges, AID weighs in:
The Challenges Ahead
Just a month into his term as Florida’s top official, Governor Ron DeSantis seeks to make big changes, but how much of a grace period will constituents grant him before they start demanding results?
In January, with his left hand on the Bible, Ron DeSantis swore to support, protect and defend the state of Florida. In doing so, he officially became the Sunshine State’s 46th governor.
(Here the article goes on to discuss the new governor's efforts regarding the environment and education, before coming to this section on health care.)
Health care was top of mind for voters leading up to gubernatorial election. And for good reason: Health care costs have continued to rise nation-wide, while in the Sunshine State, the number of uninsured residents increased from 2016 to 2017, according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau.
Joan Alker, executive director and research professor at the Center for Children and Families at Georgetown University, says the rising number of uninsured residents is a problem for everyone, not just those who lack protection.
“Having a large number of uninsured people … puts the load on the health care system because there are uncompensated health care costs that get shifted to everybody including most employer-sponsored health insurance,” she says.
To combat this problem, DeSantis has said he’d like to see more choices offered in the health insurance field, so that people can buy plans that are less traditional which may fit their needs better.
He’s also called for more transparency in health care pricing.
Marni Jameson Carey, executive director of the Association of Independent Doctors, which is headquartered in Winter Park, says she’s glad to hear the governor is aware of a problem that her organization has been fighting since its inception.
“Health care is the only industry where you go in and purchase a service and don’t know what it’s going to cost you in the end,” she says. “And the industry likes it that way because they get to charge more.”
Former Gov. Scott was a champion of price transparency in health care as well. During his term, he pushed the state legislature to allocate money for a website that would allow people to compare prices for procedures at different facilities.
“This is not something the hospital association or the insurers are going to give up easily,” Jameson Carey says. “They’re going to fight tooth and nail, which is exactly what we expect and exactly what is happening.”
Beyond price transparency, Jameson Carey would like to see DeSantis look into stopping the monopolies that are being created as health care providers merge.
“I would like to have him stop the consolidation that is happening in our health care market,” she says. “All the mergers are driving health care prices way, way up.”
Read more here.Doctors departing NCH? Care concerns at the Naples-area hospitals grow
Naples Daily News | Liz Freeman | Jan. 5, 2019
Half a dozen specialized radiologists at the NCH Healthcare System have left or given notice, which could create gaps in services for patients and affect the quality of care, according to a former fundraiser for the nonprofit hospital system.
Read more here.