By Robert S. Pembroke
For decades I ran a small business that employed 45 people — give or take a few. When I took over the family business, the cost of healthcare for our employees was insignificant. According to the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, the annual cost of healthcare for each citizen in America was $356 in 1970. In 2016, the cost of healthcare for each American was $10,545. Now, that’s significant, folks!
Five years ago, my children put me on a permanent sabbatical and changed the locks on the door of the shop. I then became involved in trying to help small businesses reduce their cost of healthcare. People at the University of Utah Health Sciences asked me to participate in a project to change healthcare for the better. We had a number of meetings that included a group of so-called “experts” in the field of medicine. The best ideas that came out of the effort, I thought, was bundled pricing and patient-centered care. There were no answers proposed on how to reduce the cost of small-business healthcare.