I spoke to so many people today who were wondering why health insurance premiums were going up so much next year. Almost everyone thought it was because of healthcare reform. No one was being negative, they were merely trying to understand why it’s going to cost so much more next year. It is important to make sure people understand healthcare premiums have been going up year after year — long before healthcare reform was passed. While last year the increases were lower than this year, for a whole host of reasons, the harsh reality is our healthcare costs will continue to rise until we are all willing to truly tackle the many reasons behind the explosive growth. To name a few, an aging population, new drugs and technologies to treat an ever increasing number of diseases, and finally, if not most importantly, our insatiable demand for healthcare services when we want them, regardless of the costs.
I have written about this before but I feel it is important to remind everyone when insurance companies raise their rates year after year. It would be easy to blame healthcare reform, but it is also wrong. We need to give healthcare reform a chance to work. It really starts in 2014. Until then, we are going to have to deal with what we have and hope that as more and more reforms are implemented, we may finally see some relief. Even then, I am not optimistic that we will have done enough to control costs. Congress will need to make some hard decisions. We all will have to make some hard decisions about how to pay for healthcare in the future. In the interim, do not blame healthcare reform for the high costs. If you are really looking for someone to blame, call your congressman.