Healthcare is incredibly complicated. And it's weird, because I almost take comfort in the confusion. If my doctor says things I don't understand, part of me thinks, "Alright, well, they should be smarter than me. The fact that I'm confused is probably a good thing."
But in that confusion comes a lot of wasted money. For example, the same exact surgery can cost radically different amounts at two different hospitals. An x-ray could be $300 one place, $2,000 at another. A trip to the Emergency Room could be $500 more than a trip to urgent care. These dollar amounts keep going up and people are paying more in premiums and deductibles year after year. At the employer level, organizations pay close to $13,000 per employee on healthcare benefits. That's like paying each employee their normal salary plus handing them each a dozen iPhones. These rising healthcare costs impact how many people a company can hire, keep, and/or give pay increases to.
There are a ton of different targets who ultimately get blamed for the problems of healthcare. The Republicans. The Democrats. All of Washington, D.C. The insurance companies. The pharmaceutical companies. The hospitals. That random guy at the farmer's market who told me the mason jar of Kombucha would make me jump higher.
But I'd like to propose a different villain altogether, one that I think we can easily fix. One that plagues other industries like finance and legal contracts.
The main culprit? Confusing language.
I'm launching the series Medium Rare Healthcare to be the perfect balance of really good advice delivered in a way that's easy to understand. To use my tried and true steak analogy, on one end of the spectrum there's "Rare" Healthcare, which is basically the football coach saying, "Eh, rub some dirt on it." The other end is Overcooked Healthcare that's full of jargon, acronyms, and all the things that make me say, "Alright, well here's my credit card, just take whatever seems fair." Medium Rare finds the ideal balance. And I use the steak analogy, because this series is intended to help people like me who ultimately do care about their health, but also order steaks and hamburgers far more often than a Caesar salad.
The first Monday of every month, I'll be passing the keyboard over to experts in the healthcare space who will introduce ideas for employers and employees alike that both make sense, save money, and are good for your health. I'll introduce you to a company that went from making video games like You Don't Know Jack to making healthcare easier to understand for 1,200 organizations, including over 20 percent of the Fortune 500. I'll introduce you to a dietitian who can explain why sugar and carbs might be the surprising reason for headaches and a stuffy nose. A dentist who explains why one place may say you have zero cavities, another place says there are five that need to be filled immediately. An organization who makes the case for why flying to New York City, staying in a 5-star hotel, going to a Broadway play and then having a surgery out there can be a far more enjoyable (and surprisingly less expensive) approach vs. doing the surgery at the hospital down the street.
And so much more!
I'm excited for this. I think these posts are going to be really cool, really helpful, and I hope I can do my part to chip away at the Confusing Language villain. Totally buried the lead here, but I am thrilled to announce that Dave Chase, author, speaker, and creator/co-founder of Health Rosetta, will be kicking the series off with the inaugural post this Monday, November 5th.
Hope to see you here in a few days!
To all subscribers of the blog, I want to apologize for sending you three notifications this week with posts on Monday, Wednesday, and now Friday. That is definitely not going to be the new norm on the site. A three-a-week pace is like hitting 8.0 on the treadmill; it's just not sustainable.
A quick road-map for November, Dave Chase will be running things on Monday and then I'll be back on the 12th to start the second half of "Medium Rare Trip to Italy." I'll have posts every Monday for sure and my guess would be a few Wednesdays too. Then December I'll be shutting things down for the annual month off to eat Christmas cookies with a side of eggnog (which is part of why I have experts coming in for Medium Rare Healthcare vs. me writing it). And, if you'd like to catch up on the first half of Medium Rare Trip to Italy, here are the posts below.
Then last but not least, if you'd like to subscribe to this blog, just enter your email address in the box below or email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for reading and see you Monday!