Healthy Wisconsin critics should come up with alternatives

    Would you mind if we asked those criticizing the Healthy Wisconsin reform plan if we could see their written plan and subsequent study (to the tune of $155,000) validating their answers to the health care issues in Wisconsin?

    It bothers me that the amount of effort, thought, collaboration, expense, time, etc., put into the Healthy Wisconsin plan is subjected to severe criticism in "not so nice" forums, when no one else states what alternatives should be implemented.

    It seems to me that we, instead, ought to be sitting at the table with Healthy Wisconsin framers David Riemer and Jon Richards and the committees in Madison to further compromise a plan that will positively assist in solving the cost, transparency, preventative, etc., needs of the citizens of the state.

    A plan that the business community could endorse while assuring the uninsured a viable alternative to the emergency room and subsequent cost shift is in large part what we need.

    You know, if you’re not at the table, you’re probably on the menu.

    I haven’t heard  nor seen a well thought out position that is out front by the business community … What is the plan? Where is the written solution? Where is the coordination of the effort to use the best business/academic minds to put a plan in place?

    The easy route is to blast away at someone else’s written plan with none of your own. That takes little talent. It’s a negative use of time.

    Please note that many public entities that are in financial straits benefit in cost with Healthy Wisconsin (that’s a lot of families in this state and votes as well!) And we’re only four votes away in the Senate from a Democratic-controlled legislature.
    I

    participated in many lengthy discussions and reviews of the Wisconsin Health Plan arguing (and winning) for lifestyle/preventative benefits, as well as all the reasons why agents/brokers ought to be compensated in the service of the plan participants.

    Those two efforts were essentially erased in the formation of the Healthy Wisconsin compromised plan. There is much positive work to be done. It’s not going to happen favorably to the business community without much more intensive thought for the alternative.

    Towns, counties, and municipalities across the state are calculating the savings they would experience under the Healthy Wisconsin proposal. Senate Democrats have posted a list of savings projected by various local governments.
    Health and health care will change at a pace far faster than the last decade witnessed. We have many challenges (infant mortality and teenage pregnancy as examples) to solve.

    Even thoughtful and constructive criticism has a role, but we need a different emphasis than what we’re getting.

    Instead of "I’m" against "them," what’s needed is "we" and/or "us" so that all can benefit. Somewhere, it will all come together, but some may not like what they got. I don’t think the status quo is the answer, and most others don’t, either.

    Arvid "Dick" Tillmar is a partner at Diversified Insurance Services Inc. in Waukesha.

     

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