The rising cost of health care in the state of Minnesota as well as in the country is one of the greatest concerns we face today. Some of the decisions facing Minnesotans in the future will be:
…. How will our farming community and our families be able to afford health care?
…. How will small businesses and their employees be able to afford health care when the costs are eating up any possible wage increases?
…. How are we going to deal with long-term care of our aging population which means my parents and your parents?
These are problems facing every Minnesotan, whether you can afford insurance or not. What is certain is that health care costs and coverage are changing so rapidly that there is no guarantee it will be there when you need it the most.
Myths have circulated for years that blamed the rising costs of health care on – Americans aging faster than citizens of other countries, Americans have unhealthy lifestyles, malpractice law suits, and so on. None of these have any relevance. They have been refuted by numerous studies conducted by many reputable universities and organizations.
The real reasons for rising health care costs are administrative costs. In the past 11 years the administrative costs for healthcare in Minnesota have risen 403%! From 1968 to 1993 administrative staff have increased 288%. That rate is nearly twice the increase in the number of registered nurses and almost four times the increase in the number of physicians. The source of this data is from the MN Dept. of Health, which requires HMOs to file annual reports on their expenditures.
The State of Minnesota cannot afford to lose our small business and farming community. We need to provide assurances to our elderly and to our Minnesota families that health care will be affordable and it will be around when you need it. We have to find solutions and we have to do it now.