Florida Blue CEO: Single-payer is not future of healthcare

The healthcare industry keeps changing, and the future landscape will not involve a single-payer system, Florida Blue CEO Pat Geraghty told Florida Watchdog.

"There's too much space between where we are now (with the Affordable Care Act) and the single-payer option," he said. "There's lots of room to innovate between here and there."

Florida's largest health insurer plans to expand and collaborate to survive amid rising healthcare costs. "The answer isn't going to single payer," Geraghty told Florida Watchdog. "The answer is developing new partnerships."

Florida Blue had expansion and collaboration in mind when it opened 11 retail stores that allow consumers to buy health plans, discuss claim questions and receive general wellness services. In fact, the company might start selling noninsurance products, such as vitamins or fitness equipment, in the stores to help increase revenue, FierceHealthPayer previously reported.

To grow membership and boost revenue, insurers should consider expanding into international markets and Medicaid markets, according to a brief from Mark Farrah Associates, which outlined successful strategies of Aetna, Cigna, Health Care Service Corporation, Humana, Kaiser Permanente, UnitedHealth and WellPoint.

Geraghty delivered his vision for the future of healthcare amid calls for a single-payer system. Champions for the model now include Colin Powell, former secretary of state and retired four-star Army general; Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin (D); and U.S healthcare providers, such as oncologists.

Growing support for establishing single-payer healthcare in the United States similar to programs operating in Canada and the United Kingdom, hasn't made Florida Blue worried about getting left out of the system.  "[W]e'll be a payer," Geraghty told Florida Watchdog, adding, "We have 32 percent of Medicare payouts."

For more:
- here's the Florida Watchdog article