August 11th, 2009
05:26 PM ET

The three obstacles to health care access

Program Note: The Health Research Institute at PriceWaterhouseCoopers has released several reports on health care, analyzing costs and trends to provide information for health care providers, payers and employers. Tonight on AC360º at 10 P.M. ET, Tom Foreman goes through this report and takes a closer look at waste in the current U.S. health care system.

[cnn-photo-caption image="http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/HEALTH/08/04/hcif.ideal.medicine/art.denny.w.patient.jpg" caption="PriceWaterhouseCoopers identifies the major areas of waste in a new report."]


By several measures, access to care is jammed for many Americans. Universal coverage, if passed, won't necessarily translate into better access. This report from PricewaterhouseCoopers’ Health Research Institute (HRI), identifies three key obstacles to access: crowded points of entry such as the ED, a system that is confusing to navigate, and individuals who inevitably fail to act on their health early.

The Jammed access: Widening the front door to healthcare report finds that consumers are open to trying new means of access and the industry is already responding. Solutions discussed in the report include: new means of access like online consultations, coordination of care among practitioners by using nonphysician providers, and supportive models such as shared medical appointments that enable patients to learn from each other as well as from their providers.

Read the report here.

View the website here.

Filed under: 360° Radar • Finance • Health Care • Tom Foreman
soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. Carol Safety Harbor, Fl.

    Tonight, on AC360, John Roberts quoted a study done by the Lewin Group of the Heritage Foundation. Then he and Dr. Sanjay Gupta
    discussed the data from that so called "study". I suggest you do a little research on who funds the "study" conducted by the Lewin Group. Rachel Maddow, in true scholarly fashion, DID just that...researched who the Lewin Group really is. If you do not want to do your own research, I suggest you check out Rachel's findings before you start quoting numbers from insurance industry "research" groups. Lately, I have heard other news reports on CNN that I have questioned, reports such as the ridiculous "birther-style" comments from Lou Dobbs who sounds like he should work for Fox News. On the break, the ad for CNN claimed itself to be "#1 in trust" by it's viewers. I am a viewer and I am beginning to not trust your facts, so I turn you off. I hope that if Anderson were doing this report he would have really done it by "digging deeper". This report certainly does not fit that category. Sloppy research or a move to the Right, CNN????

    August 12, 2009 at 2:50 am |
  2. Karen Lagerbloom

    health care reform is needed in this country. For this who have it so good, take some time to look at those with no insurance or have had their current insurance services sliced to nearly nothing.

    August 12, 2009 at 12:16 am |
  3. Dave D Canadian

    Strangely, a large consulting company that work for the insurance industry on occassion, did not site the insurance industry as an issue.

    August 11, 2009 at 11:15 pm |
  4. Terry, TX

    Annie.....they have to run tests so they don't turn around and get sued... Obama has no tort reform in his Obama care....if you had a heart attack on the table you would have blamed him....and lawsuit time. You also have no idea what the their malpractice insurance costs. Demonizing doctors like the Obama, ACORN, Democrats and SEIU demonizing AIG, their families and the stock market.....it won't work anymore....even Obama claimed pediatricians were taking out unnecessary tonsils. Can't fool us anymore.

    August 11, 2009 at 11:01 pm |
  5. Liz in FL

    For those readers writing in from other countries and those who oppose reform here is my story and it is typical in these united states. I’m in my twenties, had a good job and got married. We decided to have a baby. Found out halfway through the pregnancy it costs $22,000 to give birth. No problem, I have insurance it only cost me $3000 ( two months income). We want to get the family plan through our employer when the baby arrives. No problem, just $650 a month but we’ll have good coverage, right? One fourth of my husband’s income, but I’m still working, so that’s okay.

    One month after renewing the employer plan I get laid off. Now we can’t afford the 650 a month so we want to cancel. No such luck. Can’t cancel until the renewall date in eleven months. 25% of our family income belongs to blue cross and blue sheild. While we are struggling to pay all of the bills on one income and have NO food in the cupboard, we have great insurance. So I can rest assured that if I pass out from not eating the insurance will pick up the tab, right? Well yes, except for the $1000 per person deductable, the 20% copay, the ambulance ride if it was not pre-approved and any medications not on the ‘covered meds’ list. Those would be my responsibility.

    I could have avoided this delema altogether if I had never gotten married and said “I don’t know who the daddy is.” like so many other people. Then I would have free healthcare. My, how we punish working people in this country. Even with health insurance I won’t take my sick baby to the specialist because I can’t afford the copay.

    These seniors object to reform while they enjoy their expensive public option (Medicare). How much did they spend on healthcare in their twenties. How much did it cost them to give birth. How would politicians know about this stuff either? Just like the welfare whores they get it all for free at my expense.

    August 11, 2009 at 10:01 pm |
  6. Annie Kate

    By the way – someone needs to spell check the title to this post – obstacles is spelled wrong in the title.

    August 11, 2009 at 9:38 pm |
  7. David, Indiana

    A-mazing how fast my previous comment was posted.

    August 11, 2009 at 9:33 pm |
  8. David, Indiana

    Great Annie Kate, glad you found a new doctor. Also enjoy the very negative nature of you comment.

    August 11, 2009 at 9:16 pm |
  9. Annie Kate

    Perhaps taking the health care away from any elected official that does not work constructively on health care reform might be an incentive for them to find a workable section. Or let the American citizen have the same health insurance the Congress has. I'm tired of paying for them to have insurance when t here are so many non-government people without. Another thing they need to do is drop the tests that are not related to what you went in to be seen about – for example, I have a hip that needs replaced. When I went in to my doctor to find out what it needed because it was so very painful, the doctor didn't want to examine my hip he wanted to run tests on my heart. He wanted to look everywhere but where the problem was!! And it would have cost me a bundle but by that point (after months of this) I was over it and dropped him and found another doctor. The first doctor and is tests was an expensive waste of my time and money with no benefit to my condition at all.

    August 11, 2009 at 8:30 pm |
  10. Brennis

    @ healthcare worker...man am I glad to see somebody say something about this that's in the biz. I was starting to feel like I was only one who cared. LOL

    But one thing the study left out was the INSURANCE COMPANIES....and the DOCTORS...look they are making all the money and don't want to be affordable, that would mean being paid less and then making less and maybe becoming the lower income (yeah right) people that they are denying health coverage to.

    And only under a single payor system would insurance companies not exist. In all honesty, they are the making the doctors so rich in the first place. So they stand together against healthcare reform. Taking from the rich to give to the poor, what a horrible idea.

    Gotta love American capitalism, where even your health is negotiable.

    August 11, 2009 at 7:11 pm |
  11. healthcare worker

    First, do away with our elected officials healthcare and make them accept whatever they pass for the rest of us. Or open their healthcare program to all of us at the same cost. Second, let's put a stop to test with and without contrast. Once a test is done without contrast it is usually ordered again with contrast as it didn't show anything the first time. Third, if I take my car in and pay them 400 to run diagnositcs, I'm not paying them to do it a second time. If the test isn't clear then run it again at no cost. Stop making the patient be a victim by paying for a second or third test. Unneccesary tests are expensive and a waste of resources. And the end of life counseling is cost effective. It is not euthanasia. And it's already in effect. Medicare will not give you a defibrilator if you have a life expectancy of less than 6months. And it makes sense. Why pay 50k to give someone with end stage chf a defibrilator.

    August 11, 2009 at 6:49 pm |