Friday, August 7, 2009

Former Congressman suggests alternatives to Obama's health care reform

Bookmark and Share

There is a lot of opposition to President Obama's Health Care initiatives, even though 47 million Americans -- I repeat Americans -- do not have healthcare, are denied healthcare by the insurance company robber barons, or can't afford healthcare.

Many of those who have healthcare are afraid to lose what they have. They have been so abused by the bureaucratic muscling of the insurance companies like Humana and Blue Cross -- you can't argue with them and in a dispute, you are guilty first and may spend months trying to correct the record and the credit bureau black marks they help place -- the public with insurance is afraid to rock the boat. Americans with health care believe that their coverage will change and the health care industry robber barons are helping to promote that because they will try to hurt people who support the public health care option.

So what do we do? Let the lobbyists for the low-lifes in the health care industry win by pouring big bucks into the back campaign pockets of the conservative Republicans or the so-called "Blue Dog Democrats" -- I call them the Blue Cross Dog Democrats?

Or, according to former Congressman Bill Lipinski, offer a better plan that targets the problems with healthcare by focusing on the problems not creating a new system.

It might make sense to pass laws that:

1- Prohibit health insurance companies like Blue Cross and Humana and all from denying healthcare coverage to anyone because of alleged pre-conditions.
2- Prosecute health insurance companies that do deny coverage
3- create a system of price controls to prevent the health care insurance robber barons from excessively increasing prices
4- Create price controls to limit the costs of pharmaceuticals and tell the pahrmaceutical industry to shove it, too. (A prescription drug under a healthcare plan might cost $150 in paper price, but only really costs pennies to purchase, for example. If you do not have coverage, you have to pay the $150 which is excessive theft.)
5- Provide healthcare subsidies to families that cannot afford to purchase healthcare

The biggest problem with the healthcare industry is not the cost of healthcare. It is the healthcare insurance companies denying coverage or limiting coverage to individuals or families making it impossible to get healthcare for the issues they need. In many cases, the denials involve pre-existing conditions that insurance companies claim they will not cover by attaching riders and forcing applicants to sign them months after the applications have been submitted with payment and approved -- and months after the applicant can return to an old healthcare coverage.

These are real issues that need to be changed. If the public does not want a healthcare public option that President Obama is proposing, than create tougher laws to force the healthcare industry to provide the coverage they are denying.

Several of these big healthcare insurers have been recording record profits of more than $800 billion just in the past year. Clearly, these "profits" prove that the cost of healthcare is way beyond what it should be.

-- Ray Hanania

No comments: