Health Futures Inc. President Jeff Goldsmith has some controversial views on the biggest sticking point in President Obama's health care overhaul plan. Namely, he says dump the whole public plan idea.
In a Health Affairs blog post today, Goldsmith suggests that Obama give up the idea of creating a new Medicare-like public health insurance plan to compete with private plans if he wants to get a bill passed this year. He says:
"...the Obama team and congressional leadership will have to forswear the potential for an ideologically polarizing fight with a fragmented industry. That fight might please a resurgent Democratic base, but it could also galvanize providers and insurers, as well as risk-averse consumers, and lead health reform back to gridlock."
Instead, he says, leverage the State Childrens' Health Insurance Program and expand Medicare to more of the uninsured, accept health industry concessions, and implement the new technologies that will streamline the medical system.