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Draft of Upcoming Initiative for the Colorado Health Care Cooperative
Click here to read and comment on the most recent draft version.
Comments are due by noon August 15.
The Colorado Health Care Cooperative is an investment in our future.
It’s a smart way to bring health care costs under control and to create a health care system that allows everyone in the state of Colorado to have access to high-quality medical care. It is a way to do health care better and spend our money wisely.
The Cooperative would operate just like any cooperative business whose members come together for their mutual benefit. Yet it’s an ingenious Colorado solution to the health care crisis.
First and foremost, the Cooperative would be a business that would be operated and owned by its members, who would democratically elect a Board of Directors under clean election rules. The best care often comes from local efforts and the Cooperative would support and coordinate that care.
It is a fair system with nearly everyone in the state paying into the Cooperative so that all residents could have health care at a cost that is much less than we are paying. Premiums into the Cooperative would be based on income and businesses would contribute, too.
The Cooperative would attack health care costs on a number of fronts. First, the Cooperative would eliminate the 20-30 percent of overhead created by insurance companies. Second, the Smart Card, which would carry your medical history, would reduce fraud and duplication of expensive tests.
Because of the economies of scale, the Cooperative would be able to lower costs for prescription drugs and medical supplies by being able to negotiate bulk purchasing.
The benefits to members would be extraordinary. The Cooperative would provide coverage equal to or better than most “platinum” insurance plans, placing a high priority on preventive care to help stop the rise of chronic diseases, like diabetes and high blood pressure. There would be no deductibles and no co-pays for primary care. Money would not be a barrier to receiving necessary care. It would eliminate medical bankruptcy in Colorado. Plus, you would always be able to choose your own doctor or health care provider.
For businesses, it would do away with the necessity of administering employee health plans or workers’ compensation health care benefits, giving Colorado businesses a competitive advantage on the world market.
Health care professionals would no longer have to deal with the paperwork from scores of insurance companies and hundreds of different plans Providers would continue to do business, as they do now, in for-profit, non-profit or public entities.
In short, the Cooperative would give each of us peace of mind when we need health care the most. It’s hard to put a price on that, but we did, and the Cooperative rocks.
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Thanks for all that you do and all that you give. It matters.
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