House Panel Takes Testimony On Controlling Health Costs

Jan 15, 2016

Credit Walleigh via wikimedia commons

Healthcare costs remain front of mind for the state Legislature, and a new House panel is looking for ways to reduce how much Floridians spend. 

After sinking last year’s session, Medicaid expansion is off the table.  But that doesn’t mean lawmakers aren’t concerned about the rising cost of care.  Author and doctor Marty Makary believes tracking and reporting on performance is key to lowering costs.  He says imagine you’re a surgeon who has more complications than your peers.

“The health department is aware of it, and your national society is aware of it, maybe your CEO is aware of the data,” Makary says.  “No one needs to go to jail, or get fined, or lose their license—we don’t need to do anything draconian.  That person, I submit to you, will radically change their behavior and that’s what we’re watching.”

State officials, in particular the Governor, argue greater transparency will keep the cost of healthcare under control.  But critics argue expanding access to primary care will make a bigger impact on the balance sheet.