Monday, October 05, 2009

Reform won't end cherry-picking by private insurers

From MyDD here.

If the final health care reform bill has no public health insurance option, many chronically ill Americans are likely to be left outside the system as insurers find new ways of denying coverage or dropping policy-holders.

Even if the final bill includes a limited public option, cherry-picking by private insurers could set up the public plan for failure. President Obama has endorsed the idea of making the public option available only to people who are currently uninsured, meaning it will serve a disproportionate number of chronically ill people. That will drive up costs of operating the public plan.

I don't have an answer for this problem, beyond feeling depressed that corporate groups like AHIP have so much sway with Congress. If Americans with prior health issues are still facing discrimination after Obama signs what he claims to be sweeping "health insurance reform," the political backlash against Democrats could be severe.

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