Saturday, September 19, 2009

The healthcare "enemy"

It appears the "enemy" in the healthcare debate is no longer the health insurers or pharmacy companies. Those groups cut a deal in secret negotiations with the Obama administration, and in return committed over $150 million to help promote the Obama plan.

The enemy is now "gold plated plans", those costing over $8,000 per year for individual coverage. "Gold plated plans" will be taxed with a 35% surcharge.

Generally, "gold plated plans" reimburse for 80% of medical expenses, at any medical provider chosen by the insured, with a small initial deductible and an annual cap on out of pocket expenses. This used to be considered the standard employee benefit health insurance plan.

I always thought the goal of healthcare reform was to get more people into "gold plated" style plans. If you listen to the supporters of healthcare reform, they all complain about big deductibles, the lack of choice and high out of pockets. They seem to all want "gold plated plans".

But, if you look at the Obama / Baucus proposals, it seems that the goal is to kill "gold plated plans" with taxation, and use the money saved to get universal HMO coverage for everyone.

Consider me opposed.

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