The Hoover Institution’s Lanhee Chen, Tom Church, and Daniel Heil unveiled their new “Choices for All Project” at an event yesterday in Washington, adding creative new ideas to the abundance of pro-patient health policy proposals offered by free-market think tanks.
One new feature is the “Individual Health Account” designed to expand Health Savings Accounts to tens of millions more families. Their Choices plan offers dozens of recommendations and comes with a detailed cost analysis—$94 billion over ten years—with suggestions on where to get pay-fors.
Lanhee explained that the plan is designed to engage consumers in seeking value in health care and coverage, offer a broader variety of plans, including to people on Medicaid and exchange plans, and remove restrictions that constrict supply and block innovation.
Texas Rep. Dan Crenshaw spoke at the event and praised in particular the plan’s enhanced access to Direct Primary Care by allowing payments to DPC providers to count as deductible medical expenses.
The plan “offers targeted, incentive-based improvements to our healthcare system rather than a one-size-fits-all fix,” the authors explain. “It attempts to improve incentives by creating more choices in how we pay for healthcare, what services we use, and which providers we see.
“…We believe the answer lies with patients. That means introducing meaningful prices into the system. It means fewer supply-side regulations that limit the supply of hospitals or providers. And it means finding new, innovative ways to deliver insurance and medical care that better meet the demands of patients.”
You know that the media greatly annoys me when it ignores ALL of the other serious proposals that have been offered, as Axios did this week. “Ever since the Affordable Care Act ‘repeal and replace’ effort failed in 2017, Republicans have struggled to find a unifying vision for health care they can put forward in presidential and congressional races,” Axios writes in an article previewing the Hoover plan.
Wrong. There is a consistent vision in the new Choices for All Project, the Consensus Group’s Health Care Choicesproposal, FREOPP’s Fair Care Act, the Goodman Institute/Rep. Pete Session’s Health Care Fairness for All Act, Heartland’s American Health Care Plan, countless ideas from the American Enterprise Institute, Heritage, Paragon Health Institute and many state-based think tanks, in addition to the dozens of individual bills making their way through the legislative process in Congress.
There is a lively debate over details, but we are all on the same page in offering proposals to create a consumer-centered health sector, with many more choices of affordable care and coverage, powered by transparency, genuine competition, and robust innovation.
Also, watch your inbox on Monday for a bonus post. To preview: My friend and colleague Bob Graboyes asked me to write about my serendipitous experience of witnessing legendary Art Laffer draw his famous curve on a cocktail napkin at the Hotel Washington.
Here is Bob’s intro to my guest piece on his excellent Substack platform, Bastiat’s Window.
“For 49 years, the scrawling of the Laffer Curve on a napkin has circulated as legend, with details changing from telling to telling. Who was in attendance? …Today’s article is likely the first detailed account of that historic evening—arguably the start of the Reagan Revolution—by someone who was actually present.”
Birth of the Laffer Curve: Eyewitness to the Cocktail Napkin that Launched a Presidency
By Grace-Marie Turner, with a foreword and graphics by Robert Graboyes, followed by a related story on one of the most peculiar patriotic song ever.
Feel free to share the link and comment, and I highly recommend that you subscribe to Bastiat’s Window to read Bob’s wealth of informed and entertaining posts on economics, ethics, health, technology, and culture.
Finally, AmericanHealthCareChoices newsletter will be taking a few weeks off in August. We will return with breaking news and commentary soon.