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5 Minutes With A Health Insurance CEO On The Next Big Thing

Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.
The Florida Channel
Dr. Sandeep Bajaj, left, and David Lewis.

Health care is 17.5 percent of the gross domestic product. Think about that for a second: For every dollar spent in the U.S., about 18 pennies go to health care. One idea to curb the actual cost of health care is the Accountable Care Organizations, or ACO.

UnitedHealthcare and Florida Accountable Care Services announced a new ACO in Orlando yesterday. This one deals with private and commercial health insurance, not just the government.

I spoke with David Lewis, CEO of UnitedHealthcare of Central and North Florida, and Dr. Sandeep Bajaj, founder and CEO of Florida Accountable Care Services. Hit the audio at the top of the story to hear the full interview.

Bajaj on what an ACO is:

“It is asking the providers to come together to put their heads together to come up with innovative solutions so that we can mitigate the cost and elevate the quality of our patients. There are almost 400 ACOs in the country that have formed. And about 23 percent are successful. Ours is one of those.”

Lewis on why people should pay attention:

“I think this is the wave of the future. This is a recognition that the most nimble and effective practitioner in our system today is a primary care physicians, sitting in the patient office visit room with the white coat and the pad. That’s where it all starts and that’s where it all should be coordinated from.”

Hit the audio at the top of the story to hear the full interview.

Reporter Abe Aboraya is part of WMFE in Orlando. Health News Florida receives support from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

Health News Florida reporter Abe Aboraya works for WMFE in Orlando. He started writing for newspapers in high school. After graduating from the University of Central Florida in 2007, he spent a year traveling and working as a freelance reporter for the Seattle Times and the Seattle Weekly, and working for local news websites in the San Francisco Bay area. Most recently Abe worked as a reporter for the Orlando Business Journal. He comes from a family of health care workers.