Monday, August 12, 2013

Grieving Mother Explains Need For Obamacare

Prior to a town hall meeting with North Carolina Republican Rep. Patrick McHenry (right), who has repeatedly voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act, grieving mother Leslie Boyd said that had "Obamacare" existed sooner, her son might have received the care he needed for his "pre-existing condition." Starting in 2014, the health reform law prevents insurers from discriminating against those already beset by illness. Boyd explained, "My son had a pre-existing condition, a birth defect. And without that birth defect he probably would have been able to get insurance. But that birth defect prevented him from getting insurance and without it he could not get the care he needed. And so he got colon cancer and they caught it after it had already spread, so he died." Watch:


Michael J. Mand said...

Far be it for me to argue from the vantage point of insurance companies, against whom I have, on many occasions, fought on behalf of many of my patients for benefits I believed to be denied unjustly. But , let's face it, you wouldn't buy a product you know to be defective. If insurance companies are forced to offer health insurance to people who are known to have medical issues, they have to be allowed to charge a higher premium to those people individually; or share they msut be allowed to share the increased costs across the board. Obamacare demonstrates its understanding of the concerns of insurance companies by requiring that everyone, including the healthiest, obtain medical insurance. It is this mandate that opponents of Obamacare object to most vehemently. I have a solution that addresses both concerns. Insurance carriers can offer two tiers: one that doesn't discriminate against those already known to have medical issues, and one that does. The former is presented at a higher premium. It goes without saying that people with pre-existing conditions present a higher financial risk for insurance carriers. And, as I said, this potential downside can only be offset through higher premiums. And these higher premiums can only be mitigated via the universal mandate. As long as healthcare remains a marketable commodity eventually sought by everybody, solutions as to its financing will remain complicated. Solutions may be simple, but they are not easy.

BTW, insurance companies do this with life insurance and automobile insurance all the time. I had to pay a significantly higher premium for life insurance because of an illness for which I reccoverd almost 40 years ago, and for which there are no signs of recurrence. Those last two points were of no consideration when determining the premium. It was my choice to take it or leave it. I took it. Risky drivers pay a much higher premium for auto insurance as well.

Jeff Tone said...

The idea that people who are ill should be turned down is unacceptable. Further, we already pay for the uninsured who use emergency rooms. This issue is one of the reasons we need a universal mandate for health care to be more affordable to all. That's why Massachusetts, under Mitt Romney, implemented the mandate.