Treasurer Folwell is worried about cartels. I’m worried he may have joined one.

Dear Treasurer Folwell,

Health care providers should not charge secret prices, and the NCGA should not underfund the State Health Plan.

The $34 billion + in unfunded liabilities assumes all employees retire at once.  Please stop using this number to raise alarms, and focus instead on the $400 million annual underfunding as of 2017.

Please stop moving ahead with your Clear Pricing Project when the writing is on the wall that less than half of providers will sign on, resulting in state employees paying out-of-network costs to continue seeing many of their current providers.

Providers shoulder blame as well, but if you’re asking people to choose between the providers who treat their health needs, and government officials who have not shown them respect in their budgets, comments, and use us as pawns in this showdown, you cannot win this game of chicken.

You can be right in your goal (fair and transparent pricing) and wrong in your means (ultimatums with 720k+ workers’ health care at stake).

Forgiveness begins with atonement.

Turn your fight to getting the NCGA to support legislation that would require sunshine on health care charges.

Turn your fight into advocating for what is best for our citizens, including state employees and teachers, by earning their trust so they can fight with you and not defend themselves as hostages.

As teachers, we understand that our plans in theory do not always go as planned in practice.  We take the temperature and adjust our plans to better serve our intended goal – not double-down to try to prove we were right all along.

Please follow our lead in how we adjust to better serve our students and we can have more faith that following your lead in fighting for transparent pricing is a trusted and effective path.

Sincerely,

Kim Mackey

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