I promise, this will be my last comment here. Health care insurance is not like your local good neighbor from years past that helped you plan for your family's financial future. It is a mega industry built on actuarial tables with very, very little risk to the investors (stockholders). You can not "win". A small example is the case of a friend of mine. A self employed, hard working and conservative (financially) man, he paid premiums all his working life because he thought it the prudent thing to do. A few years back, he was diagnosed with cancer. After paying for the first treatment, the company, (one of the biggies) dropped him cold. What they paid did not even come to one year's worth of his premiums. He eventually received the needed treatment due to a caring Dr. And a great community of friends. It wiped him out. Now at 60 plus he is having to sell his home (very low mortgage) and take to the road to survive.
This is but one story out of thousands. You are right Mike. The insurance companies don't make medical decisions or provide health care. But they sure can kill ya. Ok, I'll go back to my silence.
Carol, one thing before you go. A Health Insurance Company can cancel for two reasons: 1. Non payment of premium or 2. Withdrawal from doing business in a state. If it was one of the "biggies", I doubt they completely canceled an entire block of business because of your friends claims. What state is he in? Do they not have an insurance department that handles complaints? Do they not have attorneys in that state? I grow weary of hearing BS like "thousands" of people getting screwed. You know one person who says he got screwed but I promise you don't know the details. They cannot cancel an individual for having claims nor can they "rate" a customer off the books. They can rescind coverage if the applicant lied about their health history on their application. I'm afraid I must quote Road Kill and call Bravo Sierra.
Originally Posted by 2tall
What were they built on in the good ol' days? I can't imagine a business based on math (odds) was developed without calculation.
Originally Posted by 2tall
Are you sure the big bad insurance company is what you say or do you think that the farce called managed care, reimbursement, policy limitations or related costs were involved? I don't personally know they answer, in your stated case, but not all policies are equal.
2Tall, look at Medicare. The govt decides the compensation rates, and the fear is that with the govt contemplating reducing the compensation rates, more doctors will decline to take on more Medicare patients, since they can get better compensation via insurance companies.
Via Obamacare, eventually you end up with single-payer (govt) health insurance ... you might call it the universal Medicare and it will cost a bunch of $ to have that. What you "think" you are "saving" in premium v. what you pay now, you will pay the balance via income or sales taxes. The govt will have "administrative costs", just like insurors do. More govt employees with juicy retirement plans, and more members for SEIU who won't have to settle for the same health care program that everybody else gets (waivers, you know, for select groups). And if insurance companies are ornery to deal with, the govt bureaucracy won't be any better.
And right now people have sued insurance companies and won. Not likely to get many health care suits against a govt bureaucracy ... since the regulations that evolve for the law will not be "negotiable".
The UK's system is unravelling. Took a long while to work through the cycle, but the chickens are coming home to roost. The govt there is encouraging doctors to take "private" patients; and encouraging patients to take advantage of that. Waiting periods in Canada for important testing (from a friend whose wife is Canadian), can be life threatening.
I don't think there are any simple or easy answers to the questions about making health care more available and more affordable. Seems like a no-brainer to me that the govt could take some of that $ that we're giving to Russia and China in foreign aid and do a thorough, independent study to see how we can make it better. Certainly the Congressional process that produced Obamacare is NOT the way to solve the problem! It was mostly political and not pragmatic. I don't believe we can get it perfect, but at least better.