Since my last blog post went up Tuesday morning, I have received numerous calls, texts and emails from readers who are enthusiastically engaged with the topic of the potential deregulation of the Certificate of Need (CON) in Florida.
As I explain in my previous post, our primary goal at Jupiter Medical Center is to provide our patients with the highest quality and most accessible health care at the fairest price possible. With that in mind, there is no conclusive evidence that deregulation improves quality, cost or access to health care. In fact, I believe that it puts all three at risk. Deregulation will result in higher cost to consumers as well as decreased access to care especially in the poorer rural communities.
I realize it isn't productive to simply state my opposition to deregulation. Instead, I have spent significant time trying to think about opportunities to affect a positive outcome. To that end, I recommend the following:
- If the government wants deregulation in health care, they should find ways in which to make it easier for health care providers to offer ambulatory services, as this type of care is often designed to provide services to consumers via a retail-like experience. Let’s create a system where the State of Florida incentivizes providers to build a world-class ambulatory network across the state with the appropriate controls in place.
- Our legislative leaders in Tallahassee should assemble and convene a bi-partisan workgroup comprised of patients, health care leaders and legislators. I recommend that they task them with both defining the problems and offering solutions to providing high-quality, accessible and reasonably-priced health care in our state. We need to move away from ideology and politics so we can focus on the responsibility of caring for the health and wellness of our community and neighbors. I will be the first to sign up to help.
This is a vitally important issue affecting all members of our community, especially those that are most vulnerable. I encourage you to remain engaged - repost, tweet and share this discussion. You may also reach out to me directly at JCouris@jupitermed.com and offer your thoughts. I look forward to working on this together.