Big Bird Comment From Romney Is Relevant To Healthcare

I keep seeing buzz about the Big Bird comment about PBS from the Presidential Debate from last week. As always, I interpret things differently. To me, this shows Romney’s willingness to make tough and perhaps unpopular decisions (like raising taxes for the Middle Class). At some point, these things may be critical.

Sure…the PBS budget may be small, but at some point, we as a country need to focus on how we cut costs to reduce our deficit. (See US debt clock.)

This reminds me a lot of the discussions we used to have to have as a PBM with employers or labor unions about their benefits. It goes back to the basic framework of “you can’t have your cake and eat it too”. Everyone wants to have a broad network of providers. Everyone wants to have an open formulary. Everyone wants to have the broadest benefits at the lowest cost without increasing their contribution every year.

Just by cutting a drug or a provider from your benefit may seem small, but the savings add up. (Like Big Bird or PBS.)

But, this is the problem we have in healthcare. How do we make enough small decisions to add up to real savings? How do we do this without upsetting everyone and impacting satisfaction (or is that simply life)?

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