Newtown, CT – April 18, 2014
We are our brothers' and sisters' keeper – Too often, in the hustle and bustle of everyday life and in the pursuit of corporate and other goals, we forget or reduce this moral dictum. This week as some celebrate Passover and others Easter, we remember that the preparation of the exodus from Egypt called an entire nation to watch its own, to care for each, to share with all, and that 1500 years later the sacrifice of one was for the sake of the entire world. The message of 2000 years ago was the same as the one 3500 years ago: we are called to more than looking out for #1. That's why we must all celebrate that millions of Americans are now covered by a decent health insurance plan. Insurance, by its very nature, exemplifies the power of community resources because it's only by pooling our resources that we can care for each other when it's essential. In that sense, everyone is our brother or sister and we are each other's keeper. It is that same moral compass that should guide us as we continue to strive for greater affordability of health care, and for its quality to be the same irrespective of gender, race or income. We have a long way to go, but it has gotten a little shorter.
What this means to you – If a friend or a family member gets sick, there are a number of experts that I can call and who can help me immediately find the right physician or facility to go to. But what about all my other "brothers and sisters"? What about those who I have yet to meet and need this information as much as those I have met? For them, for all, transparency is the answer, and not just of the quality of care, but also of the price of care. In a bold effort, the HFMA released a report this week that highlights the critical role that each of us has in getting the right information out to anyone that needs it, and we should all read it and implement its recommendations. We must also anticipate that for every action we take for the good of all, those hell-bent on protecting #1 will resist, and in the face of that resistance, we must push on harder and not compromise. And when the burden of moving the forces of the status quo becomes too heavy to bear, we can remind ourselves that this weight is never ours alone to bear for He is always at our side. Ask for help and it shall be given and never falter because truly, we are our brothers' and sisters' keeper.