Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Good News on Health Care

NYT: "Health insurance premiums are expected to rise an average of 8.8 percent, according to data compiled by the benefits consulting firm Aon Hewitt. Employees’out-of-pocket expenses are expected to increase 12.5 percent from 2010, in the form of higher premiums, higher deductibles, higher co-pays and co-insurance, or all of these, said Sara Taylor, health and welfare solutions leader at Aon Hewitt.

This is fantastic news. Really. Only when the average American has been bled dry by our current system and sees 12% increases a year when their paycheck goes up 3% a year will we ever see any real reform in this country, and they see that quality health care cannot be provided in a "free market" environment, and they will begin to realize what the rest of us are going through.

I actually thought this breaking point had occurred in the 2008 election. But apparently not. So bring it on. A 12% increase each year will so quickly overwhelm a 3% increase a year that it shouldn't take but one, or at most two, more presidential cycles.

Of course, the insurance companies will fight to the end -- and I do mean the end -- before they give up their extremely profitable monopoly. And Americans don't have anything near like the balls of the French, who stop fuel shipments just because someone wants to raise their retirement age. Who says the French don't have courage?


rhhardin said...

The health care crisis is caused by insurance in the first place. Ban insurance and the crisis disappears.

If we had haircut insurnace, nobody could afford a haircut either.

The way it worked until about the mid 60s is that doctors charged as much as they dared, given the ability to pay. They worked cheaper for poorer patients.

Sometimes free.

No doctor can stay in business charging more than somebody can pay.

Insurance companies changed the ability to pay, and the rest is history.

Insurance companies incidentally are not on the side of lower costs.

They make money on the float, not on the premiums.

The more expensive the medical care, the more money they have as float; and the more people who cannot afford to be without insurance.

Higher medical costs are good for insurance companies. It's at the price of autonomy and freedom, in the end.

It's no different when government does it instead.

Anonymous said...

rhhardin speaks with considerable wisdom. Although insurance companies are just the middlemen.

Increasing demand without increasing supply increases prices. Employer (driven by government tax policy) paid health plans and government plans have increased greatly the $$ spent on healthcare. At the same time supply is constrained by the government regulated monopoly of doctors, nurses, hospitals etc.

If we want lower cost health care we need more supply. More doctors, RNs, nurses, clinics etc. competing for business. We need clinics in Walmart. Have you checked the prices of Walmart eye care services lately?

Anonymous said...

post above is from charlesH