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Health coverage expansion, but not reform December 22, 2009

Posted by fetzthechemist in Uncategorized.

The bill that passed the Senate is a gutted version of health-care reform, at best. It changes little for doctors, insurers, pharma, or any of the others making billions in US health care. It is no coincidence that the American Medical Association immediately supported this version. I even agree with Willie Brown, the former mayor of San Francisco, who says the big winners are the insurers who gain 30 million customers at either government expense or at the exorbitant rates the insurers have in place. The status quo expanded.

Those who say any changes would limit people’s options have not really dealt with the status quo. Currently, insurers do that routinely, having lists of acceptable doctors, hospitals, drugs and treatments. If the one or two insurers in your area do not suit you, too bad. Most of the US has only that, one or two choices that include a significant number of doctors, hospitals, et cetera to choose from. TRhe insurers point to dozens of minor providers in each area as prove of a free market, but those have only a handful of offerings scattered through the region. Not a real choice. If your insurer decides to exit an area, you will see the limitations when you get your new insurer or have to apply for one.

The saddest part of it all is how inherently corrupted the Congress is. Ben Nelson, the senator from Nebraska, had the interests of Mutual of Omaha in the forefront. Joe Lieberman is from Connecticutt, the state where dozens of insurers are headquartered. No coincidence that both held out for concessions.

So the US’s health care will remain overly expensive, but with even more profits for the companies.



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