Amazon, JPMorgan Chase and Berkshire Hathaway have announced that they will be working together to discover ways to improve American health care for their US employees. Altogether, the three companies have one million workers, a good sample to work with. Now, my insurance did cover this, and billing my family was in error, but seeing a number like that on a bill was enough to really drive home how much healthcare can cost, and why some people would avoid ever seeking care.
According to a joint news release issued on January 30, the initial focus of the new company will be on technology solutions that will provide USA employees and their families with simplified, high-quality and transparent health care at a reasonable cost.
But the medical industry does not own Amazon, the world's largest internet company, or Berkshire Hathaway, the conglomerate Fortune ranks as America's third-most-profitable company, or JPMorgan Chase, America's biggest bank.
Amazon, Berkshire, and JP Morgan - like Kaiser Permanente did before - will need to develop a primary care based medical system and attempt to limit unnecessary visits to inflated specialists and emergency rooms that increase costs and compromise quality.
"To make it sound like there's some sort of prohibition on people getting access to treatments is a gross misrepresentation of reality", Bateman-House said.
'The ballooning costs of (health care) act as a hungry tapeworm on the American economy.
"Our group does not come to this problem with answers", Buffet said.
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It's great to have him here and we're looking forward to getting to know him and seeing what he can do in training and games. We didn't control it, lost the second ball on the ground and it was a really, really bad goal".
This isn't the first time big employers have tried to tackle health-care costs. The alliance will apply only to their employees.
The online retailer and cloud provider has got together with Warren Buffet's conglomerate Berkshire Hathaway and financial services firm JPMorgan Chase to explore how to provide healthcare to their tens of thousands of U.S. employees.
Futurists, who study and make predictions about technological and scientific innovations to come, are confident Amazon will play a significant role in health care.
Amazon, with 541,900 employees globally as of October, is known for transforming industries. CVS Health's deal last month to buy the health insurer Aetna for about $69 billion is just one example of the changes underway.
Amazon's reputation as a disrupter of industry could be a real boon here, because this new partnership will shake up an industry that desperately needs disrupting.
It's not surprising, then, that corporations that are at least partially responsible for providing employees with health insurance are finally pushing back against an industry that has had little incentive to contain costs. "That's up from just 5 percent of GDP 50 years ago".
Jamie Dimon, the chief executive of JPMorgan Chase, is hopeful that the effort could eventually be expanded to benefit all Americans.
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While 95 percent of large companies offer insurance, only 50 percent of companies with three to 49 employees offered coverage previous year, according to the nonprofit Kaiser Family Foundation. In July, he complained about politicians arguing about "stupid (expletive)" instead of solving problems.
"Our nation's healthcare costs are essentially twice as much per person vs. most other developed nations", Dimon said.
What does this say about these three companies, about our country and about our future? They know the elements of the past playbook individually. Their expertise is managing profit in their core operations. It must also be reiterated that the initial goal here is to create a top-down health-care system that isn't an enterprise in and of itself, but rather an employee benefit.
They must compensate their specialists in a method other than fee-for-service to discourage costly, excessive, and unsafe procedures.
"The health care system is complex, and we enter into this challenge open-eyed about the degree of difficulty", Bezos said in the same statement.
And if [they are] going to have control of the data flowing through to each of the entities in the food chain, that means they should, in theory, be able to have better outcomes in terms of the improvement of health of the employee population. "Success is going to require talented experts, a beginner's mind, and a long-term orientation".
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