Sunday, July 26, 2009

More on Health Care

The NY Times editorial breaks it all out -- a lot easier to understand without the rhetoric and hot blood of either side. What caught my eye was this paragraph: Right now employers are free to change or even drop your coverage at any time. Under likely reforms, they would remain free to do so, provided they paid a penalty to help offset the cost for their workers who would then buy coverage through an exchange.

This actually happened to me at a previous employer. Our good health plan was switched and we were told that 95% of our doctors etc., would remain the same. But lo and behold, when I went to use the plan, I soon learned that it was literally the Edsel of health insurance plans. No one would take my insurance except for a few clinics scattered here or there. My colleagues, including one who had a brain tumor, found themselves in the same boat. We couldn't even find a dentist who would accept our insurance. The irony of all this? Our premiums actually went up while our coverage, in theory, went down. Our employer argued that they kept the coverage the same -- which could be true, but we couldn't actually prove this because no doctors would accept our insurance.

Flash forward a year, and our employer was forced to change our plan because the outcry was so much. We ended up getting a better plan, and again, premiums went up, but at least this time, we had doctors and dentists who would accept the plan. I would have gladly, for that year, taken an offset payment and gone with a private insurance plan on an exchange or elsewhere rather than paying for something I clearly could not use.

I have no idea if Obama's plan is the right one, but I do know inaction isn't the right way to go. I'm in favor of doing *something* -- such a complex subject and so many opinions, it's hard to know who's right and who's wrong. I only know I have had enough experience with the existing system to know it can't go on like this.


Anonymous said...

Every time I hear what USians suffer under your ludicrous and cruel health system I want to cry. Seriously, health providers should not be in a position where they have to refuse to TAKE YOUR MONEY FOR THEIR SERVICE. It's as if you couldn't buy groceries at shops in your neighbourhood because you weren't with the right grocery plan.

I wish you all luck.

Seema said...

Exactly. What happened to us was incredibly ridiculous. It took a year for me to find a dentist in my neighborhood that would be willing to accept my plan. As for the health insurance, only clinics that accepted government insurance would see us. It was ridiculous. I went a year without medical treatment (not that I needed it) simply because I could not locate anyone who would provide me basic services such as an annual checkup.