The ACP Advocate Blog

by Bob Doherty

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

“My love for you is like health care cost growth: out of control”

Policy wonks have a reputation as being rather serious folks who can talk incessantly about things like medical loss ratios, CBO scoring, and risk pools – not exactly fodder for a knee-slapping good time or a romantic night on the town.

But many of us do have a sense of humor, as evidenced by the Health Policy Valentines shared on a new Twitter hash tag. The hash tag, started by a federal government staffer to share with her friends, has gone viral, getting thousands of responses and inviting attention from the Washington Post and New York Times, among other “mainstream” media. (For those of you who are not Twitter savvy, a hash tag is a way of organizing Twitter discussions around a central theme. So the #happyvalentinesday hash tag allows Twitter subscribers to create and share their own health policy-related Valentines.)

But you don’t need to be on Twitter to enjoy the Health Policy Valentines. The headline for this post is one of my favorites, written by Sara Kliff, a health reporter for the Washington Post. I wrote and Tweeted several myself (my Twitter “handle” is @bobdohertyACP if you want to follow me):

Will our love have a sustainable growth rate? Or will our hearts be broken, year after year after year?

Hey, sweetheart, the CBO isn't the only one who knows how to score!

My love, I'll define my contribution if you'll define my benefit.

Sweetheart, I've paid into this relationship for all these years, so I'm entitled to be your Valentine.

My love, please don't repeal and replace me!

I'll show you my medical loss ratio if you'll show me yours!

If love was like health reform, does that mean that people could shop around for a better deal through an exchange?

If love was like health reform, it would be universal and portable. Kind of like San Fran in the Summer of Love.

If love was like health reform, everyone would have to have a partner, or pay a penalty.

Is a broken heart a pre-existing condition? If so, will you mend mine or exclude me?

I promise to be true to you in good times and bad, with guaranteed renewability and no life-time limit on my love.

Some of my favorites (not penned by me):

No court would ever strike down this love!

You are my statistically significant other.

Roses are red, violets are blue, I could never ration my love for you!

How about trying your hand and posting your own Health Policy Valentine as a comment to this blog? And Happy Valentine’s Day!

Today’s question: Can you write and post a Health Policy Valentine, in 140 characters or less?

1 Comments :

Blogger kethy said...

mos def quotes Great post, very informative. I think a lot of people will find this very useful.Keep post in coming future as well!!!

February 16, 2012 at 7:45 AM  

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About the Author

Bob Doherty is Senior Vice President, American College of Physicians Government Affairs and Public Policy; Author of the ACP Advocate Blog

Email Bob Doherty: TheACPAdvocateblog@acponline.org.

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