The people who are coming to town halls have a point. Their justifiable anxiety (some of it sparked by politicians and the news media) stands in the way of a down-payment on reforming Obamacare in short run and reforming our health care delivery system in the medium to long term. These vocal town hall participants are part of the 1 percent of the USA population that incur 23 percent of the cost of health care in the United States. Here's how we can help these people without raising insurance premiums for the other 95 percent!
Recently my allergy doctor suggested a vapor treatment for my pollen-driven tightened chest. I said okay. It never occurred to me to ask how much does the treatment cost because I won't get a bill. The charge will merely be an object of curiosity when the insurance company sends me an explanation of benefits they paid. If the insurer is required to pay – no questions asked – for tests and treatments, our profit-making health care eco-system is going to prescribe more at a higher cost each. That leads directly to rising insurance premiums. If I had to pay the bill for that treatment, I would have asked more questions about the cost and efficacy.