Last week, the New York Times ran a front-page story about Harvard reducing its health insurance costs by shifting a portion of them to its faculty and other employees. It describes Harvard’s rationale and the angry faculty response.
Harvard isn’t alone. More and more organizations, both large and small, are doing the same as they struggle to stop the seemingly inexorable increase in health insurance costs.
Unfortunately, this solution is akin to rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. It alleviates the immediate pressure on the employer by shifting costs from employer to employee—but it does little to directly reduce healthcare costs, or in turn, health insurance costs.
There’s a better solution and it will give early adopters a competitive advantage. It is to give a revolutionary new product called MedKaz® to employees as a benefit. It actually enables doctors to deliver better care, saves employees money and time away from work, reduces employer health insurance costs, and, in the process, generates employee goodwill.
MedKaz succeeds where other approaches fail because it attacks a primary driver of higher healthcare costs: the inability of care providers to access a patient’s complete medical record at the point of care. Lacking access, they often make mistakes that annually sicken a million or more patients, kill several hundred thousand, and cost hundreds of $$billions.
MedKaz is a unique, patient-focused personal health record system that enables care providers to access their patient’s complete lifetime medical record from all her providers both local and far away, in all formats, both paper and electronic. It is the only system that can do so today and for the foreseeable future. The government’s program to achieve comparable interoperability which has been in underway for 10 years and has cost more than $26 billion to date, doesn’t work beyond very small networks and isn’t expected to work on a national scale until 2024, if then.
The MedKaz business model is equally unique, generates a highly profitable new revenue source for providers and makes MedKaz financially self-sustaining.
MedKaz aggregates the patient’s records and its patented application to manage them on a MedKaz Green Drive®. The patient owns it, carries it on a keychain, in a wallet or wears it and gives it to any provider she sees anytime, anywhere, in or out of her network, at home or away.
When the provider logs on, an up-to-date health summary and other information about his patient are waiting for him. As he examines and treats her, he can sort, search for and access specific records created by her other current or past care providers and, thereby, avoid mistakes and unnecessary tests. He or his employer is paid to update his patient’s MedKaz so it is always current.
MedKaz co-exists with and complements all provider record systems, blends smoothly with provider workflow, is simple, inexpensive, easy to use, encrypted, secure, and HIPAA compliant. And it’s available today!
Everyone benefits. Providers can practice better, lower-cost medicine and generate material new revenue — most of which drops to their bottom line. Patients save deductibles and co-pays (see the attached case studies), enjoy better care and fewer sick days, can participate in their care decisions, and enjoy peace of mind knowing that any provider can instantly review their health issues and history, and coordinate their care.
Employers enjoy substantial health insurance cost savings that far exceed the cost of offering MedKaz as a benefit, and enjoy greater employee productivity and goodwill. Insurers and government similarly enjoy health insurance cost savings and other benefits.