WEDNESDAY APRIL 12, 2017
FORMERLY BENEFITS SELLING EXPO
By Daniel Williams
The American health care system ay have a myriad of problems, but health care expert Aaron Carroll said we sometimes make the issue more complicated than is needed.
Carroll, who is the director of the Center
for Health Policy, Indiana University School
of Medicine, served as the opening keynote
“Think about health care as the iron triangle,”
That iron triangle draws its strength (and
weaknesses) in the answers to three questions:
how much coverage costs; how good is the
coverage; and, how well do people get access.
“If anyone promises they can improve all
three, they are either lying or a politician or
both,” said Carroll.
The three-legged stool
The U.S. did not invent universal health care
out of thin air, according to Carroll. “The vast
majority of developed countries offer universal
coverage,” he said. “The U.S. remained alone
in not offering it along with Chile, Turkey and
The Affordable Care Act made its promise on
the idea of a three-legged stool, stated Carroll.
1. Everyone should be able to get insurance
even if they have a pre-existing condition.
2. To prevent people from gaming the system.
They need to buy insurance even if they are
3. To make sure everyone can afford the
insurance, many people will be given tax credits
to help offset the costs.
“For it to work,” said Carroll. “We need all
three legs of the stool. This is how all of the
countries with universal health care make it
work. They all start with a similar model in
In making his case about America’s woes,
Carroll submitted a series of slides comparing
the U.S. health care system to other countries
who are members of the OECD (Organisation
for Economic Co-operation and Development).
After looking at the results, let’s just say, thank
At least in one measure, the ACA has worked.
“We have reduced the number of uninsured to an
all-time low,” Carroll said.
But that’s only one way to measure the success
of the ACA. A 2016 Commonwealth Study looked
at a myriad of health topics that often placed the
U.S. in an unfavorable light.
The U.S, was second to last in the percent of
people unable to get a same-day appointment
when sick, just above Canada. Half of Americans
cannot get an appointment on the same day if
they call in sick.
Cost, however, is the biggest barrier to access,
and that barrier stretches across socioeconomic
lines. About one-third of all Americans
neglect care because of costs. The richer half
of Americans are more likely to forego filling a
prescription or going to a doctor when compared
to the poorest people in other OECD countries.
#BPROBrokerExpo QUESTIONS? COMMENTS? INSULTS? DON’T FORGET TO TWEET.
BROKER OF THE YEAR
10: 15 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
NICOLLE WALLACE &
“Crossfire on Current Events and Today’s
Divisive Political Landscape”
11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
“The Neuroscience of Change”
1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
THE WOBBLY STOOL OF HEALTH CARE
Continued on page 4