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A Washington, D.C.-based, nonprofit advocacy group has refocused its mission from opposing the Affordable Care Act to fixing it.
There are many problems with the Affordable Care Act. But a full repeal of the law seems unlikely, regardless of who wins the election next month. Attention has turned in some quarters, then, not to overturning the law but to fixing it.
First, let’s take a look at what’s wrong with the ACA.
“The ACA got it wrong in its fundamental premise,” according to Kathryn Serkes, co-founder and CEO of the Doctor-Patient Medial Association (DPMA), “and that is presuming that providing widespread access to insurance equals widespread access to care.” My company has worked on a pro-bono basis for the DPMA and they’ve retained us for possible contractual work in the future, though no paid work has yet been performed.
Fixing healthcare’s problems will ultimately require aligning physicians, allied healthcare professionals, hospitals, long term care, the medical insurance, device, diagnostics supply and pharmaceutical industries, along with a dozen others and the general public to a common goal.
Too ambitious? Maybe, but consider three things:
The first two realities are obvious, and few would dispute them. The third item is a newly realized opportunity thanks to a recent comprehensive report by the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies, which found an estimated three quarters of a trillion dollars per year wasted by our healthcare system.
DPMA’s strategy is to make series of fundamental reforms to capture waste and reallocate it to provide access to care to all Americans using traditional market forces.
“We believe it is possible, if the industry works in its common interest to make fundamental reforms, to replace revenue presently being wasted in unnecessary, improperly regulated and overpriced services with volume by increasing the number of Americans with affordable access to care,” said Mark Schiller, MD, DPMA’s co-founder, “giving the public, healthcare industry and government a simultaneous win.”
Schiller also believes “that industry-led reform needs a catalyst to get it started, an information hub to make it happen and a referee to keep it honest, and we have decided to repurpose our entire organization to serve those roles.”
Despite the daunting prospects of funding and managing a program of this size, which will require broad financial and volunteer support, DPMA is forging ahead with its five-point, 10-year plan to reduce $4-5 trillion in cost, improve outcomes and fund access to care to all Americans: