Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Obama Premieres Universal Health Care Plan...For Insurance Companies

In essence, Obama's plan retains the private insurance system but injects additional money into the system to pay for the expanded coverage boost insurance company revenues.

Under Obama's proposal, every American would be required to carry health insurance, and the Illinois senator would create a National Health Insurance Exchange to monitor insurance companies in offering the coverage.

Those who can't afford coverage would get a subsidy on a sliding scale depending on their income, and virtually all businesses would have to share in the cost of coverage for their workers. The plan that would be offered would be similar to the one covering members of Congress (ed. note: That's the FEHBP. For an interesting by-play, read the "comments" here.)

The package proposed by Obama would "prohibit" insurance companies from refusing coverage because of pre-existing conditions (ed. note: how that would be accomplished is not specified). It promises to cover the 45 million (roughly one-sixth of the US population) currently without health insurance coverage.

In addition to broadening coverage, Obama called for a series of steps to overhaul the current health care system. He would spend more money boosting technology in the health industry such as electronic record-keeping (ed note: this will doubtless please--and further enrich--Ross Perot), put in place better management for chronic diseases (ed. note: via more Government surveillance?), and create a reinsurance pool for catastrophic illnesses to take the burden of their costs off of other premium payers.

His plan also envisions savings from ending the expensive care for the uninsured when they get sick. That care now is often provided at emergency rooms. The plan also would put a heavy focus on preventing disease through lifestyle changes (Ed. note: Via MORE surveillance?).

IMHO: Any plan that preserves the dominant role of private, for-profit insurance and hospital/clinic corporations must primarily serve the interests of the profiteers rather than those of the people relying on them for health service and care.


Lois said...

People should read this.

woody said...

I thought so, too...

Tell your friends?