Home > Tim Pawlenty > Pawlenty’s Health Care Pitch

Pawlenty’s Health Care Pitch

Exciting.  Pawlenty offers up a series of proposals to reform MinnesotaCare next year.  Fox reports:

Pawlenty’s three-pointed plan includes:

Allowing Minnesotans to purchase health insurance from other states.

  • Requiring state-supported health plans MinnesotaCare and Medical Assistance to use ratings on the quality and cost of providers to set rates.
  • Building incentives for Minnesotans who choose higher quality and lower cost providers.
  • Under Pawlenty’s proposal, MinnesotaCare plans would have a higher deductible and the state would contribute to an electronic benefits card that could be used to cover out-of-pocket health expenses. Money left over on the card would remain with the enrollee to be used in the following year.

Pawlenty says the higher deductible coupled with the card would push people to choose higher-quality, cheaper providers and that would maximize the value of the state contribution.

Very interesting stuff.  I’d like to hear much more about the last point.  This electronic benefits card, with rollover, looks vaguely like something Ross Douthat and Reihan Salam mentioned in their book Grand New Party.  It also looks a bit like a health savings account, or the partial privatization idea for social security.  Note, when the state refers to MinnesotaCare, its mostly talking about the state supported plans, not private plans.  So this doesn’t expand government, though it’ll probably lower costs and expand coverage.

  1. mac
    October 14, 2009 at 12:22 am

    Sounds great.

    “Allowing Minnesotans to purchase health insurance from other states.”

    That we are in the absurd place in which “allowing” people to purchase the product/service they want makes the news tells us all we need to know about the mess we’re in.

  2. MWS
    October 14, 2009 at 9:44 pm


    Ditto that.

    I think we would see a major drop in the cost of insurance if insurers were forced/allowed to truly compete. We also need to let them design all sorts of plans, so 60 year olds are forced to pay for birth control coverage, etc…..

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