Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Reform Rx – GOP Healthy Insurance Companies Bill

Republicans are finally getting to work and producing a GOP alternative health care bill that offers the public the option to evaluate their commitment to reform. Of course it does not have the diabolical public option. The GOP says it is all about costs and obviously concludes it is not about care.

Here are key emerging features:

- Insurance companies can continue refusing to cover pre-existing conditions so that the industry’s financial health does not deteriorate.
- The bill will allow the purchasing of health insurance policies across state lines so that insurance companies will be able to cherry pick where to sell based on lack of regulation and other requirements that suppress healthy profits for insurance companies. As a bonus, insurance companies could decide to charter in weak regulatory states to build low benefit–high profit plans to sell in other states to help the bottom line.
- The government does not get diabolically involved in health care except to encourage expansion of expensive state based high risk pools to help ensure that insurance companies avoid costly individuals so that insurance companies do not have any risks of low profits.
- Small businesses will be permitted to band together to buy health care so that after satisfying insurance company risk elimination and eliminating pre-existing conditions risks another market opens up to insurance companies bolstering their overall income. The pools themselves or insurance company determinations will reject businesses with high risk individuals to keep costs low and profits high.
- Medical malpractice awards for pain and suffering will be capped at $250,000 so that insurance companies will not have to endure the pain and suffering of paying out of profits for things like an individual’s loss of income for life or decades of misery.

Republicans do get velvet glove tough with the insurance industry in one area. There will not be a mandate that everyone must be covered which does not deliver another new market to insurance companies. Since the Republican plan also does not include tax credits for the poor that would make sense under such a mandate, a conclusion that insurance companies only need to have a giant profit protection guarantee rather than a mammoth one must have been reached.

Finally don’t worry, illegal aliens and abortions are not covered to keep the base fired up on social issues while shoveling the cash into health insurance company coffers.

GOP: Guaranteeing Outlandish Profits!

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