Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius, D, says policymakers have to think about more than health insurance if they want to solve the current U.S. health care crisis.
“Almost half of every [health care] dollar is not paying for health care at all,” Sebelius said here during an interview.
About 30 cents on every dollar covers administrative costs, and 16 cents of every dollar is “the tax we pay for Americans who don’t have insurance,” Sebelius said.
Sebelius, a former president of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, came here Saturday to be the keynote speaker at the NAIC’s summer meeting.
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Sebelius was first elected governor of Kansas in 2002 and then reelected in 2006. She is appearing frequently these days on lists of possible candidates for the Democratic vice presidential nomination.
While Sebelius was an insurance commissioner, she was chair of the NAIC’s Health Insurance and Managed Care Committee.
During the interview, Sebelius said the U.S. health care system should put more emphasis on prevention; encourage Americans to take more responsibility for risk factors that they can control, such as exercising and eating right; and make better use of technology
Sebelius also talked about strategies for helping the uninsured and making sure that workers with employer-sponsored coverage keep their coverage.