Utah Employers Want the State to Embrace Consumer-driven Health Care.

The Utah state legislature asked the question and the state’s businesses responded – “We want the state to embrace a consumer-driven health system.”

An Article appearing on AHIP Hi-Wire news site reported that The Health System Reform Bill of Rights, signed by a cross section of leaders who together employ about 400,000 people, was to be unveiled Tuesday by the Salt Lake Chamber of Commerce in a Capitol Hill news conference.

According to the report the state’s business sector — which provides health insurance to 1.8 million Utahns, or 79 percent of the insured population – called the health-care system “outdated and flawed,” and wants every person to have access to affordable, basic insurance.

The employers envision that these health plans would be both portable and paid for with pretax dollars by the policyholders and in addition to a fixed contribution made by employers to their employees as they set up their plans. These plans would also be guaranteed issue — which would limit when insurers could reject applicants — with rates based on a broad-based risk pool.

The plan also suggests that consumers would have access to more complete information via an Internet portal with costs of procedures, doctors’ success rates, the costs and details of health insurance plans, insurance companies’ denial rates “and other information that will support a vibrant health market.”

Another news report stated that health system reform could be one of the most pressing issues of the upcoming Utah legislative session. Businesses and individuals are demanding a system that makes more sense and offers more choices to stay healthy. By signing a bill of rights, this group is sending a message that this won’t be put on the back burner.

Health Plan Innovation’s Take: With the economy becoming a bigger issue on the national level, look for health care reform to continue to come primarily from the nation’s statehouses.

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