Tuesday, March 1, 2016

qotd: CMS’s Slavitt calls for ‘retailization’ of health care

Politico Pulse
March 1, 2016
Slavitt: Health Care 'Retailization' Is Coming
By Dan Diamond

Speaking at the Federation of American Hospitals annual meeting on
Monday, CMS acting administrator Andy Slavitt invited providers to join
the agency's ongoing push for the "retailization" of health care.

"A retail strategy calls on you to imagine you are negotiating directly
with a cash paying consumer who used to be a source of bad debt — except
one who now has the wherewithal to pay for services and wants to build a
relationship where they can also find elective, outpatient and wellness
services," Slavitt said. He went on to elaborate about the need for
further price and billing transparency in health care — just like in
other consumer markets.



Comment by Don McCanne

Yesterday, at the annual meeting of the Federation of American
Hospitals, Acting CMS Administrator Andy Slavitt asked the for-profit
hospitals to join CMS's ongoing push for the "retailization" of health care.

Retailization? Providers should imagine negotiating with cash paying
consumers. They should strive for "further price and billing
transparency in health care — just like in other consumer markets."

Could there be a more explicit advocacy of consumer-driven health care -
placing the patient-consumer in charge of health care spending? It fits
with CMS's efforts to privatize Medicare by over-paying the private
Medicare Advantage plans, with overtures to convert Medicare to a
premium support (voucher) market of private plans.

Politics? This is coming from an administration headed by a Democrat - a
neoliberal administration that has been mislabeled as progressive - and
supported by a presidential candidate who rejects Medicare for All and
wants to build on Obamacare with its high deductible private health
plans that place the patient-consumer in charge.

Retailization. Watch out, here it comes!

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