Tune in Monday morning!
For all the early birds, I’ll be on Joplin’s 1310 KZRG Morning Newswatch Monday morning at 7:40 a.m., to talk about the recent autism mandate legislation and how mandates raise costs. Make sure to listen in! (Note: The radio website hasn’t been working today in Firefox, but it works in some other browsers.)
There has been a lot of charged rhetoric on the topic of autism mandates, and I’m positive that its proponents have had the best of intentions. (In fact, I played softball last weekend with one of the sponsors of the bill, Sen. Eric Schmitt, and he seemed like a great guy.)
It’s important, though, to understand the economic mechanisms behind mandates. Insurance becomes prohibitively expensive if the government attempts to mandate coverage of everything that could happen to anyone. As I’ve mentioned before, high-deductible health savings accounts are one of the best ways to handle these sorts of issues; once the policy owner exceeds a certain deductible, their insurance can cover the cost of treatment. The high deductible helps to minimize costs by reducing the health care wedge between patient and doctor, as well as reserving insurance for its intended purpose: large, catastrophic costs. Market competition is a more effective way to bring health coverage to all children with autism and other conditions, and not just a select few.
(Also, a quick thanks to John Combest for linking to my op-ed in the Springfield News-Leader! My op-ed will also be available in the Sunday edition of the Joplin Globe.)