Details still scarce in Ron DeSantis’ health care plan
TALLAHASSEE, FLA. 3/7/23-Gov. Ron DeSantis, center, is flanked by House Speaker Paul Renner, R-Palm Coast, left, and Senate President Kathleen Passidomo, R-Naples, as he gives the State of State address during the opening day of the 2023 Florida Legislative Session, Tuesday at the Capitol in Tallahassee. COLIN HACKLEY PHOTO

'It is so complex, so complicated that it's a big, big undertaking.'

Florida’s Governor continues to criticize Donald Trump for failing to “repeal and replace” the Barack Obama-led “Affordable Care Act.”

But when it comes to how he’d replace the nearly 14-year-old health care law, Ron DeSantis continues to struggle to offer tangible answers as to what his proposals would be, preferring vague rhetoric over concrete remedies that would inform voters.

“It is so complex, so complicated that it’s a big, big undertaking because so many people have different types of interests in the system and the status quo. So when you go in and do that, man, the lobbyists are going to come out and everything. You’ve got to strike though. So you’ve got to get a plan, and we’re working on a plan,” DeSantis said Tuesday on WGIR radio in New Hampshire.

The Governor, who has not worked in the private sector since his election to Congress in 2012, seemed to misunderstand how health insurance networks actually function at times in the interview. He likened complex medical procedures and the various questions about whether facilities or staff are in or out of network that drive care decisions to buying landscaping tools at department stores.

“People don’t know how much anything costs. And so, in order to reduce costs, you do that through consumer behavior. You know, if you’re down in one part of town and they’re selling a lawn mower for $150 and then on the other side of town, you get the same lawnmower for $100, people are going to go buy the one for $100,” DeSantis suggested.

“But yet as a patient, if I need to get something on my hip, if it’s three times more expensive one place, if the third party is paying for it, then there’s no price signals there,” he added, drawing a metaphor that only makes sense if all medical providers are in network, which isn’t the case with Health Insurance Marketplace plans.

DeSantis believes that the “health care system is dominated by an iron triangle: Big Pharma, Big Insurance and Big Government,” a schematic that ensures “the doctor and the patient are at the back of the bus.” He also said there needs to be “less corporatization of doctors.”

But in terms of how he would implement that reform, his pitch is reliant on legislative partners who have yet to accomplish anything substantial.

“I think that there’s a lot in Congress, you know, it’s got to be collaborative. It can’t just maybe be shoving it down people’s throat. But you’ve got to go and you’ve just got to make it happen.”

DeSantis has already said he won’t offer a proposal to replace the current health care system until months after Iowa’s caucuses on Jan. 15.

“Well, we’re going to be working on, probably in the Spring, we will roll out a big proposal,” DeSantis said on “Meet the Press” Sunday.

It’s unclear why DeSantis didn’t bring the “big proposal” to Florida given its own health care costs and outcomes are among the worst in the country under his stewardship.

DeSantis has been leading Florida for nearly five years now, which Forbes notes has the fourth most expensive health care and highest private insurance costs of any state in the country.

It also has the second-highest proportion of any state’s residents struggling to pay their children’s doctor bills, the fifth-highest likelihood of patients skipping a doctor’s visit because the cost was too high, and the sixth-greatest incidence of forgoing mental health treatment.

Moreover, at least 250,000 children have been removed from Medicaid this year.

As we noted previously, if DeSantis is still running and releases his health care plan this Spring, it will be a version of history repeating. He released a health care plan during his 2018 gubernatorial campaign in late October, but the web page has since been deleted from his campaign site.

In the plan, DeSantis vowed to protect coverage for those with preexisting conditions, to offer better training and retention for nurses and other health care workers, to support seniors, bolster safety net hospitals, and fight opioid addiction.

A Democratic spokesperson at the time predicted “DeSantis’ ‘plan’ would put Floridians at risk by allowing them to be ripped off by ‘junk plans’ that offer coverage from big insurance companies in name only.”

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has written for since 2014. He is based in Northeast Florida. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter: @AGGancarski


  • Earl Pitts "Sage Health Care Expert" American

    December 5, 2023 at 9:13 am

    Good Mornting America,
    Relax your sphincters one and all and put all your health care issues at rest. Our Great Nation will thrive on “DeSantis-Care”.
    Thank you America,
    Earl Pitts “Sage Health Care Expert” American

    • Linwood Wright

      December 5, 2023 at 10:23 am

      He also has a girlfriend in Canada.

    • rick whitaker

      December 5, 2023 at 8:25 pm


  • Elmo

    December 5, 2023 at 9:25 am

    He has no plan.

  • Michael K

    December 5, 2023 at 9:52 am

    Funny how details are scarce when there is no plan. Just more lies.

  • PeterH

    December 5, 2023 at 10:03 am

    I remember when Trump ran on overhauling Obamacare and he presented the same policies as his border wall fiasco! Zilch!

    Expect nothing from DeSantis! He’s a unqualified blow hard!

  • N

    December 6, 2023 at 9:06 pm

    I read that as DeSantis’ Health Scare and I got excited for a second.

Comments are closed.


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