By Shane Cerone | Guest Column

Few would dispute that the cost of health care is spiraling out of control at a pace that is consuming the discretionary income of businesses and families alike.

While our nation’s employer-sponsored model has created one of the best and most sophisticated health care systems in the world, the model of the past doesn’t seem sustainable in the future. After all, no good is served if our employer-sponsored system eventually collapses because employers can no longer afford the care it offers.

As one of a few not-for-profit health care systems in this region, the physicians and executives at Mercy Iowa City want to help demystify the care delivery model and share our “insider’s view” as we help employers implement basic strategies to ensure beneficiaries have access to the very best care at significantly reduced expense.

As both a self-insured employer and health care provider, Mercy Iowa City is uniquely positioned to assist with this critical issue. Our health system continues its reputation as a leader for care quality (Mercy again received the highest possible quality ranking for hospital care from the federal government), patient satisfaction and affordability. Mercy’s doctors and staff understand the importance of achieving these objectives while offering a very personal care model. Within this setting, Mercy Iowa City patients recover and heal in the comfort of a private room with family and friends helping them along the way.

As a community health system, we are pleased to announce the launch of a CEO/CFO seminar on controlling your cost of health care. This program will give employers in the region an opportunity to talk with our physicians and executives on strategies to manage these expenses. The core components of the program will rest on navigating price variability in health care,  focusing on delivering better care for the small number of beneficiaries who consume nearly one-half of your medical spend, and designing benefits in a way that helps beneficiaries make the best possible health care choices.

Early in 2018, in partnership with other community organizations, Mercy Iowa City will serve as the primary host for this forum on managing cost in today’s health care environment. We invite you to join our executive and medical leadership team for this program as we share strategies to help you manage your health care costs.

We believe that serving, caring for and supporting the community and its employers is a core responsibility of a community hospital and health system. We hope that you will join us; call (319) 339-3540 to receive an invitation.

Shane Cerone is interim president and CEO of Mercy Iowa City.