The Health Insurers Have Already Won

4

August 13, 2009 by The Mormon Worker

From Business Week:

The Health Insurers Have Already Won
How UnitedHealth and rival carriers, maneuvering behind the scenes in Washington, shaped health-care reform for their own benefit

As the health reform fight shifts this month from a vacationing Washington to congressional districts and local airwaves around the country, much more of the battle than most people realize is already over. The likely victors are insurance giants such as UnitedHealth Group (UNH), Aetna (AET), and WellPoint (WLP). The carriers have succeeded in redefining the terms of the reform debate to such a degree that no matter what specifics emerge in the voluminous bill Congress may send to President Obama this fall, the insurance industry will emerge more profitable. Health reform could come with a $1 trillion price tag over the next decade, and it may complicate matters for some large employers. But insurance CEOs ought to be smiling.

Read the whole article here

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4 thoughts on “The Health Insurers Have Already Won

  1. Forest Simmons says:

    See Ralph Nader’s take in an interview on Democracy Now:

    http://www.democracynow.org/2009/8/14/you_dont_cut_deals_with_the

  2. Mike W. says:

    As soon as Big Pharma, the hospitals association and the insurance association got on board with health care reform, there wasn’t going to be any. Whatever comes out of the Congress will be a joke because of the lobby influence.

    Small health cooperatives and a basic single payer system is all that will save us from consuming health care to our own demise.

  3. Forest Simmons says:

    I would like to know more about “small health cooperatives.” Is it a movement or just an idea?

  4. Mike W. says:

    It’s more of an idea at this point, but all the components are in place. Voluntarily pooling money as a community, independently contracting with physicians and hospitals both can work right now. Even if contracting doesn’t happen to start, the payments can be made in cash instead of going through an insurance company and both hospitals and physicians will take about half what they bill if it’s paid in cash. There are some physicians (mainly primary care) who take cash-only payers. The patients are happier and the costs are lower. The key is to get the for profit money-changers out of the system.

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