Blues suggest that public health insurance poses threat

Now here's a shocker: top execs from leading Blues plan are arguing that a public insurance plan will be bad for competition and could sneak in (gasp!) a single-payer system.

The main theme of yesterday's Blues conference was that government health plans "thwart innovation," apparently by, among other things, discouraging the plans from creating pilot projects that help them improve care.

For example, the CEOs of plans in Michigan, Missouri and New Jersey spoke about projects focused on wellness and patient-centered medical homes and wellness, which have lowered costs and improved outcomes.

If there was a government-run plan on the horizon (I guess Medicare doesn't count), such innovations would be impossible. The CEOs argued that Blue plans and other commercial payors would end up paying higher rates due to cost-shifting from public plans, limiting the commercial plans' ability to innovate.

That's their argument and they're stickin' to it. How about you--do you think the introduction of more public insurance would flatten the Blues or other commercial payors?

To learn more about the presentation by the Blues:
- read this Modern Healthcare piece (reg. req.)

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