Potential Solutions for Health Care Reform Post Obamacare

Earlier this week, President-elect Donald Trump announced Rep. Tom Price (R-GA) as his pick for secretary of Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Rep. Price is a staunch opponent of Obamacare and has nearly 20 years of experience in the health care industry as an orthopedic surgeon prior to running for Congress.

With this pick and recent comments from Vice President-elect Mike Pence that Obamacare repeal will be “the first thing out of the gate,” doctors and patients have reason to be encouraged. But once Obamacare is fully repealed, which should happen on Day One of the Trump Administration, Congress should work to pass a series of bills reforming the health care industry.

While ideas on healthcare reform vary, the following policies should be implemented if Republicans are serious about lowering costs, expanding choice, and restoring the traditional doctor-patient relationship:

  1. Improve and expand health savings accounts so patients have direct control of their own health care dollars and can pay for all medical services including insurance.
  2. Remove barriers that stop patients from participating in direct primary care arrangements to increase patient choice.
  3. Allow patients to buy health insurance across state lines and enact state-led medical tort reform to increase competition.
  4. Equalize the tax treatment of health insurance to lower run-away health care spending and increase portability.
  5. Transition Medicaid and Medicare into a premium support model and get the federal government out of the practice of price fixing.
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