What is Wrong With the System?

2009 July 29

by Roy W. Bakos

What is wrong with the System, you ask?  Upon news that the Senate may take out the public option for insurance in the Heath Care Reform Act, this is how the markets reacted:

“Shares of U.S. health insurers rose broadly on Tuesday on hopes a health reform bill would not include a government-run option, which has drawn strong opposition from insurers who fear it would destroy the private marketplace.

The S&P Managed Health Care index of large U.S. health insurers closed 6.5 percent higher.”

(from Reuters News Online)

The Lewin Group, the main-think tank that is cited by Republicans and “Conservative” Democrats in their opposition to a public option in the Heath Care Reform Bill is owned by United Healthcare, the largest for-profit health insurance company in the country.  This Think Tank and it’s parent company have given millions and millions of dollars to members of Congress over the past years.  This same Congress is now letting this think-tank rewrite the “public option” out of Health Care Reform.  The “market” responds by making even more money for for-profit insurers.

The way this is being done stinks.  How many treatments have been denied by United Heathcare in the last 10 years so they could save money and dictate costs to providers of services.  From my own personal experience (back in 2007, after my heart attack, UH denied 90% of all of my claims until I fought them and won; simply, I believe, in the hope that I would just pay the “inexpensive” bills to avoid collections and shame), I would guess billions of dollars worth of necessary treatments.  How many patients died so these guys could continue to get richer?

Let’s have a real debate on the merits of Heath Care Reform and public options and choice of coverage, not one that is dominated by the members of Congress that are bought-and-paid-for shills for the big insurance companies.

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