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Thread: Health Insurers' Move to Drop Child Policies Draws Criticism

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    Health Insurers' Move to Drop Child Policies Draws Criticism

    Health Insurers' Move to Drop Child Policies Draws Criticism

    A move by insurance companies to stop selling child-only policies is drawing criticism ahead of Thursday, when the federal health overhaul will require insurers to cover sick children.

    Aetna Inc., Cigna Corp., WellPoint Inc., Humana Inc. and UnitedHealth Group Inc.'s Golden Rule subsidiary say they will no longer sell new child-only policies. The new law requires them to accept applications from sick children on insurance policies that they sell, but doesn't require them to sell a policy individually to children in the first place. Insurers said children with pre-existing conditions will be able to apply for coverage on their parents' plans.
    Well they found a loophole. Force parents to wait until their children are sick enough to need health insurance, meaning never take them to a pediatrician for normal check-ups and shots...

    At least, the insurance companies are not trying to hide their total lack of ethics. I guess they'll blame big Gov for this.

    This watered down highbred b.s. has got to end. Either go one way or the other. A robust public option or go back to the road to insolvency and bankruptcy we were on.

    National and available everywhere: A strong public health insurance option will be a national public health insurance program, available in all areas of the country. The insurance industry is made of of conglomerates that have national reach. In order to have the clout to compete with the insurance industry and keep them honest, the public health insurance option must be national as well.

    Government appointed and accountable: The entire problem with private health insurance is that they aren’t accountable to you or me. A public health insurance option must have a different incentive. A public health insurance option doesn’t have to be a government entity necessarily, but its decision makers must be appointed by government and must be accountable to government.

    Bargaining clout: The whole point of health reform is to lower health care costs. Clearly, the insurance industry has failed to lower costs when left to their own devices. As the President says, we need a strong public health insurance option to lower rates, change the incentives in our health care system, and keep the industry honest.

    Ready on day one: The private health insurance industry has utterly failed to control health care costs or provide their customers the quality they’ve paid through the nose for. With one person going bankrupt every 30 seconds due to health care costs, we cannot afford to wait any longer for a real fix. We need the public health insurance option to start lowering prices now. That means no trigger.

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    Re: Health Insurers' Move to Drop Child Policies Draws Criticism

    1) Government enacts law that makes a particular type of policy unprofitable for corporation.
    2) Corporation stops selling new policies of that type.
    3) OMG CORPORATION IS EVIL

    The logic seems strained.

    edit: Not to mention that if you actually read the article, you can see how dem politicians are scrambling to mischaracterize these actions for political gain and how your OP badly misstates what's actually happening:

    "The new federal rules required guaranteed-issue coverage for individuals under 19 without regard to affordability," said Matt Wiggin, an Aetna spokesman. "So folks seeking coverage would be those who need immediate services for high-cost conditions." Mr. Wiggin says the insurer made the decision to protect its existing child-only policyholders from increasing premiums. Aetna has only discontinued the sale of new policies, he said. Golden Rule also recently discontinued the sale of policies to children individually. "Given current health-insurance market dynamics and regulations, it is necessary to require a parent to be on a policy in the same manner as is required on an employer group plan," said Ellen Laden, a spokeswoman.

    ...

    Rep. Pete Stark (D. Calif.) said, "The insurance industry has once again shown their reckless disregard for the well-being of consumers, which is why we need the health reform law that holds them accountable." Robert Zirkelbach, a spokesman for America's Health Insurance Plans, said its pledge in March pertained to concerns at the time about children getting access to their families' policies, not to the "small, niche" market of child-only policies. Mr. Zirkelbach said there is a much greater likelihood that parents will wait until their child gets sick to purchase a child-only plan than a health policy for the whole family, and the industry is worried that the pool of members it is covering will skew increasingly toward the very costly.
    Last edited by RightinNYC; 09-21-10 at 10:32 PM.
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    Re: Health Insurers' Move to Drop Child Policies Draws Criticism

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    1) Government enacts law that makes a particular type of policy unprofitable for corporation.
    2) Corporation stops selling new policies of that type.
    3) OMG CORPORATION IS EVIL

    The logic seems strained.

    edit: Not to mention that if you actually read the article, you can see how dem politicians are scrambling to mischaracterize these actions for political gain and how your OP badly misstates what's actually happening:
    This is only the second round of blow back because the wildly phony "Obama doesn't Care about your health kill granny plan."

    The first shot was the raising of insurance rates just weeks ago and there will be more to come before we can see daylight once the New Congress and Senate begin the work to repeal the damage Obama has done to Health Care and the economy.

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    Re: Health Insurers' Move to Drop Child Policies Draws Criticism

    Health Care and the Tragedy of the Commons - Adam Wernick - Open Salon
    ~snip
    Again, from Forbes:

    "We lost the positive aspects of affiliation health insurance starting in the 1960s and through the 1980s when Wall Street discovered there was money to be made turning nonprofit health insurers, hospitals and nursing homes into investor-owned companies. What we got was a massive conflict-of-interest--profit vs. public good--that has culminated in a dysfunctional health delivery system that has undermined our economy, reduced our national wealth and torn our social fabric."

    Health insurance that is driven by profits, not by the needs of its customers, has abandoned the whole idea of mutuality. By denying coverage to their contributors, while reaping profits, they become a type of free-rider - draining the system of money and resources while deriving great benefits from participating in it.
    We need to embrace preventative medicine, nutritional counseling, local free gyms. we need to think out of the box and change how we think of healthcare. Everything we do should not be seen as a means to make a fekin' buck.

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    Re: Health Insurers' Move to Drop Child Policies Draws Criticism

    Quote Originally Posted by sokpupet View Post
    Health Care and the Tragedy of the Commons - Adam Wernick - Open Salon
    ~snip


    We need to embrace preventative medicine, nutritional counseling, local free gyms. we need to think out of the box and change how we think of healthcare. Everything we do should not be seen as a means to make a fekin' buck.
    So, get us started. Quit your job and go open a free gym for locals. Let me know how it goes for you.

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    Re: Health Insurers' Move to Drop Child Policies Draws Criticism

    Quote Originally Posted by hazlnut View Post
    Bargaining clout: The whole point of health reform is to lower health care costs. Clearly, the insurance industry has failed to lower costs when left to their own devices. As the President says, we need a strong public health insurance option to lower rates, change the incentives in our health care system, and keep the industry honest.

    Ready on day one: The private health insurance industry has utterly failed to control health care costs or provide their customers the quality they’ve paid through the nose for. With one person going bankrupt every 30 seconds due to health care costs, we cannot afford to wait any longer for a real fix. We need the public health insurance option to start lowering prices now. That means no trigger.
    You mention it quite a bit, but can you tell me how insurance companies can really lower the cost of helath care? Nearly 90 percent of the premium health insurance companies take in go toward health care. Only about 3% is for proft.

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    Re: Health Insurers' Move to Drop Child Policies Draws Criticism

    way to go liberal government...You pass a law that forces insurance companies to cover sick kids, how stupid, then insurance companies say to hell with it and stop selling child-only policies. Blame it on Obama for actually trying to get sick children health care coverage.
    I use a lot of satire and sarcasm so keep that in mind when reading my posts.

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    Re: Health Insurers' Move to Drop Child Policies Draws Criticism

    Quote Originally Posted by BCR View Post
    way to go liberal government...You pass a law that forces insurance companies to cover sick kids, how stupid, then insurance companies say to hell with it and stop selling child-only policies. Blame it on Obama for actually trying to get sick children health care coverage.
    No ones mad he tried to "help". Everyones going "DUH, of course this would happen.
    Climate, changes. It takes a particularly uneducated population to buy into the idea that it's their fault climate is changing and further political solutions can fix it.



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    Re: Health Insurers' Move to Drop Child Policies Draws Criticism

    Quote Originally Posted by BCR View Post
    way to go liberal government...You pass a law that forces insurance companies to cover sick kids, how stupid, then insurance companies say to hell with it and stop selling child-only policies. Blame it on Obama for actually trying to get sick children health care coverage.
    This is a pretty ridiculous mischaracterization of what's actually happening. The law passed by congress creates terrible incentives that would result in substantial losses to the insurers if they continued to offer these policies. That would cause the insurers to have to raise their other rates. Instead, the insurers will no longer offer the child-only policies, but will continue to allow people to add children to their other policies.

    Insurers said they were acting because the new federal requirement could create huge and unexpected costs for covering children. They said the rule might prompt parents to buy policies only after their kids became sick, producing a glut of ill youngsters to insure. As a result, they said, many companies would flee the marketplace, leaving behind a handful to shoulder a huge financial burden.

    The insurers said they now sell relatively few child-only policies, and thus the changes will have a small effect on families.
    Big health insurers to stop selling new child-only policies - latimes.com
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    Re: Health Insurers' Move to Drop Child Policies Draws Criticism

    I don't understand why you would think it is strained or that somehow insurance companies weren't already making ridiculous amounts of profit. You want to know how to make insurance companies play nicer? Break them apart, and force them to play nice. The government pussied out and put these loopholes in here so they could get some more lobbying money. Hooray for Democrats! Thanks for ****ing children over and blaming Republicans, oh but hey also thanks for raising every pack of cigarettes up the past 2 years to pay for childerns health and doing it again soon, because ****ing me over and not the insurance company makes even more sense.
    "We’re going to close the unproductive tax loopholes that allow some of the truly wealthy to avoid paying their fair share. In theory, some of those loopholes were understandable, but in practice they sometimes made it possible for millionaires to pay nothing, while a bus driver was paying ten percent of his salary, and that’s crazy." -Reagan

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