What can be done to reduce health care costs for families

Will health care costs skyrocket during the COVID-19 pandemic?
Published: Jul. 28, 2020 at 5:23 PM CDT
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WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAW) - Right now, most Americans shop for health care blind. When we shop blind, we get taken advantage of.

The average family of four spends more than $28,000 per year on health care and coverage and prices are going up. Having the ability to choose care at transparent cash prices could result in potential savings of $11,000 per year for each family. That’s real income that Americans can spend on food, housing and savings.

The economic windfall would mean employers could create more jobs and increase salaries, as our health care system would stop demanding businesses pay their escalating insurance premiums. Together these economic gains would boost our nation’s economic growth and reignite the economy following the COVID-19 pandemic.

There is a push to have price transparency included in the next round of pandemic aid that is being negotiated in Congress. The Healthcare PRICE Transparency Act, introduced June 30 by Senators Mike Braun of Indiana and Chuck Grassley of Iowa and co-sponsored by several others, promises to do just that. The bill would allow patients to know the cost of care beforehand and, more important, would allow them to shop and compare prices for both services and coverage.

Brian Blase, a leading economist and former White House & National Economic Council Advisor, joined the Deep Bench on NewsChannel 7 at 4 Tuesday to discuss the need to include price transparency in the next round of stimulus, how the healthcare industry will evolve when price transparency is introduced and the economic impact healthcare price transparency could have on Americans’ wallets.

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