Lody Zwarensteyn

Lody Zwarensteyn

Lody Zwarensteyn is a long-time observer of the West Michigan health care scene and was president of the Alliance for Health, a former nonprofit in Grand Rapids.


An open letter to Spectrum Health's new CEO

August 23, 2018
Congratulations to Tina Freese Decker on being named to take the helm of Spectrum Health. Having risen through the ranks at Spectrum, she had the opportunity to see the good, bad and ugly. Now she can capitalize on her experience and consolidate the gains made by Spectrum, promote the good, eliminate the bad and rectify the ugly. So, here are some gratuitous suggestions for her: Read More

Certificate of Need perspectives

July 31, 2018
The state’s Certificate of Need, or CON, program for the health care industry has a 46-year history. The core principle behind CON is simple: Before you begin something new, you should be able to demonstrate the need for it. Read More

Do it for the kids

May 30, 2018
It’s that time of year. Charities are calling on us to remember the kids. One of the most compelling cries is, “Do it for the kids!” Too many of us respond mindlessly in a knee-jerk way. Read More

Finger-pointing: Who owns gun violence?

February 28, 2018
Gun violence in the U.S. has many pointing fingers in many directions. Considered by many as a public health issue, gun violence has captured our attention and motivated legions of our youth to demand action. Read More

Hospital excesses

December 29, 2017
I recently had occasion to be visiting a local hospital over a weekend and noticed something disturbing to an old “cost container” like myself. The hospital was mostly empty! Read More

Hospital billing gripes

November 30, 2017
Hospital bills can be very confusing. Clearly, some changes would help. Let me give a few examples of my gripes. Read More

Can we fix the Affordable Care Act?

August 29, 2017
Don’t like the prospects for fixing the Affordable Care Act? Repeal and replace somehow didn’t work. Unilateral political action doesn’t seem to be in the cards anymore. Local leaders have not distinguished themselves in addressing real health care concerns. What can be done? Read More

Health care's legislative future

May 31, 2017
Donald Trump was elected. We continue to have a Republican House of Representatives and Senate in Washington. What does that mean for health and health care in the United States? Read More

Taxing of satellite health centers needs clarity

March 27, 2017
How much land can a nonprofit hospital remove from the tax rolls? That’s a key question as a tax tribunal judge recently ruled against Grand Rapids Township and for Spectrum Health. Read More

The state of health care prices in West Michigan

January 17, 2017
Throughout my long career, I had the privilege of knowing and working with many fine hospital trustees. They are the people who set the policies that govern a hospital’s operations. They advocate for the hospital in the community. Hopefully, they advocate for the community to the hospital. Also, they are the ones who approve the prices patients and insurers are charged by their system. Read More