Monday, January 5, 2009

Know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em

I am curious to know how the $500,000 that was earmarked to the Healthy Howard Access plan is being spent. Since not many people have enrolled in the plan, is most of that money unspent? Or is that money being used to fund operations (salaries, office supplies, etc.) for the rest of the year since no other revenue is coming in to the plan. I assume the latter, but I am curious to know for sure.

If that $500,000 will be burnt up by year end, Healthy Howard Access Plan could be a financial catastrophe. Enrollment has been open for a calendar quarter, and only 66 people have enrolled. If that embarrassing pace keeps up, there will only be about 250 people enrolled after a year. That is a cost of about $2,000 per person. For that amount of money (or close to it), each qualified participant could have been enrolled in a boutique medical plan.

So far, the only thing that HHAP has done is guarantee a federal/state tax increase by creating a flood of participants in government health insurance plans.

A little bit of intelligent market research is worth a lot of money. A desire to "do good" doesn't cut it, and I hope that certain people have learned this lesson.