CEO: LRHC ready for health care law changes [UPDATED]Published 11:22am Monday, July 2, 2012 Updated 8:26am Tuesday, July 3, 2012
Lake Region Healthcare has been taking steps to prepare for health care reform for several years, CEO Larry Schulz said. The development of the walk-in clinic and the integration between LRHC and the Fergus Falls Medical Group were both done in preparation for a new health care system.
With the intent of providing benefits including free vaccines for kids, cheaper drugs for the elderly and a guaranteed right to buy health insurance, many have high hopes for President Barack Obama’s new health care plan.
Many businesses and wealthy taxpayers, however, will see their costs go up, and most Americans balk at the idea of the government making people carry insurance or pay a penalty on their federal tax returns.
“We’ve been anticipating changes taking place in the health care system for a number of years, and we’ve been proactive in anticipating for reforms,” Schulz said.
The biggest challenge LRH faces is how to improve access to quality health care while reducing overall costs. Two major steps that have been taken to improve health care access were the development of theWalk-In Clinic and the integration between LRH and the Fergus Falls Medical Group, said Schulz.
The Walk-In Clinic makes it easier for residents to see physicians on a more timely basis, and it provides an alternative option for those with immediate medical concerns that don’t require emergency services, he said.
“We’ve been preparing for this regardless of what was going to happen with the Supreme Court’s decision because we know we need to improve health care in this country,” he said. “I think it’s important that as a society, we keep working toward a system in which hospitals and health care systems move toward improving the health of the population as a whole.”