HEALTH REPORT: Private sector companies look for sustainable approach to healtcare costs

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FAIRBANKS, Alaska - With the rising costs of healthcare, private sector companies are finding alternatives for Alaskans. A coalition, formed to do just that, proposed ideas and information at Tuesday’s Greater Chamber of Commerce meeting.

The Greater Chamber of Commerce held its weekly discussion on the topic of rising healthcare costs and how companies in the private sector could help alleviate some of the costs. According to the Alaska Department of Administration the state of Alaska spends more than a billion dollars each year to directly or indirectly fund health coverage for more than 340 thousand individuals. Fred Brown is the executive director for the Pacific Health Coalition.

"The nature of our organization is that it's private sector, non-profit, it's nimble it's able to be quickly responsive to circumstances as they exist in the marketplace" said Brown.

Senate Bill 74 determines the feasibility of creating a Health Care authority in Alaska. In doing so, the Department has engaged several contractors to help facilitate these studies. The Pacific Health Coalition is one of these contractors.

"We would like to see the cost of health care in Alaska maintain a level of growth, which is at or less than the rate of inflation, so if we could accomplish that on behalf of our members and the state of Alaska I think we would be very successful" he said.

He says since the stagnate nature of healthcare plays into costs, the price is likely to keep growing. With the Governor's budget proposal approaching, he says there could be room for concerns, but is hoping the state finds more productive ways to find a sustainable approach to healthcare costs.

For more information about senate bill 74 visit