SCOTUS Uncertainty Deters Innovation

Philip Betbeze, for HealthLeaders Media , June 15, 2012

I can't disagree with any of that, but even outside of the nonprofit sector, which Moody's monitors closely because it rates the creditworthiness of such institutions for bond buyers, uncertainty creates a vacuum for innovation.

Generally, consolidation in the healthcare industry continues apace, but that doesn't represent innovation. Rather, in many cases it represents defensive posturing and vertical integration strategies to better insulate against threats to revenue and margin. These not only rise from the law, but from nimble competitors in the private market that seek to carve out their niche of profitability in the rapidly shifting healthcare playing field.

One could argue that the decision will remove a lot of uncertainty in the market, but that's true only if you don't already have anything invested in meeting any of the possible outcomes. Most hospitals and health systems have invested heavily in gearing up for the changes, some of which have already been implemented. What's the cost of recalibrating expectations, the cost of waiting for another Congress to take up and address what the Supreme Court deactivates?

It's high, and it doesn't do anything to address the affordability or safety of healthcare.

Philip Betbeze is senior leadership editor with HealthLeaders Media.
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2 comments on "SCOTUS Uncertainty Deters Innovation"

M Cylkowski (6/19/2012 at 3:27 PM)
Phil, you might need a course in critical thinking. Your premises and conclusions support a fallacious argument. SCOTUS is not the cause. After years of Healthcare doing nothing, now it's SCOTUS causing a pause in innovation? I don't think so.

s bren (6/15/2012 at 2:28 PM)
Weak and ineffective argument Casting the "regulatory inhibition" net of stultifying regulations wiping out innovation is an inapprotiate expectation of SCOTUS. Regulation is subordinate to and the responsibilty of the President. SCOTUS is peer to Congress and the President and our last defense against tyranny. The President is solely accountable for the regulatory morrass, not SCOTUS, not Congress.




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