“Americans used to do big things together. We squared our shoulders and met our challenges. Now it’s time to mobilize for a new national project: Fixing our health care system once and for all.”

The Incentive Cure, by Francois de Brantes and Bob Conte, illustrated by Kriss Wittmann and edited/researched by Jenna Sirkin.

For most of 2012, with the help of the talented people mentioned above, I’ve worked on a book to explain what ails the US health care system and what might cure it. The Incentive Cure, as its name indicates, focuses on how to mend the current incentives that cause otherwise good people and organizations to behave badly. It’s not particularly long or difficult to read because I don’t believe you need hundreds of pages of complex sets of theories and theses to expose the failings of the system and some simple solutions. Furthermore, we don’t need to always infuse the obscure jargon that peppers most of the papers and reports that are published about health care. What we do need is to activate the American public into the fight of today’s generation. Our lack of action to fix what we know, and have known, is wrong with health care, has impoverished the lives of millions and cost the lives of thousands. Shame on all of us.

What this means to youThe Incentive Cure (which can be purchased for the astronomical sum of 99 cents at Smashwords or Amazon), is an educational tool and also a call to action. The final recipe it provides is simple:

  1. Pay for value instead of volume to encourage physicians to do right.
  2. Change health insurance benefit designs to encourage patients to do right.
  3. Make all price and quality information easy to get and act upon, to create a real health care market.
  4. Remove the regulatory and legislative barriers that impede payers and providers from innovating.

And yet applying that recipe always seems so complicated. Why? Because the agents of the status quo who benefit from the yearly $750 billion that are overspent by all of us – by the impoverished average American families – fight (and will continue to fight) tooth and nail to protect the size and depth of the trough from which they feed. They’ll use the old “rope-a-dope” tactics, feigning collaboration while obfuscating, crawling one step forward and jumping two steps back, clamoring for consensus before action is taken while exercising a veto against all action. To effectively fight against these special interests, we must again square our shoulders and meet our challenges. The Incentive Cure is a tool to activate the legions we will need to win this battle. And those legions will need leaders. Will you be one?

Reprinted from the Health Care Incentives Improvement Institute (HCI3) blog, where it appeared with the headline, “The Incentive Cure.”

© Copyright 2013, HCI3

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Francois deBrantes

Francois deBrantes

Guest Blogger, Executive Director at Health Care Incentives Improvement Institute, Inc. (HCI3)
As executive director of HCI3, Francois de Brantes is responsible for setting and implementing the strategy of the organization. This includes supervising the implementations of Bridges to Excellence and Prometheus Payment pilots, leading the development of new programs and designing incentive efforts for employers, health plans and provider organizations.

Previously, de Brantes was program leader for various healthcare initiatives at GE Corporate Health Care Programs, where he was responsible for developing the conceptual framework and the implementation of GE's Active Consumer strategy.

de Brantes attended the University of Paris IX - Dauphine where he earned a master’s degree in economics and finance. After completing his military service as a platoon leader in a light cavalry regiment, he attended the Tuck School of Business Administration at Dartmouth College and graduated with an MBA.

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