Bush to sell Kool-Aid during SOTU

Under the guise of tax-breaks and incentives, Bush’™s plan to ‘œexpand’ medical coverage and reduce the number of uninsured Americans with the creation of tax-free savings accounts and resource pooling is a health insurers dream come true. Unfortunately, his snake-oil plan will do more damage to consumers and patients than the Clear Skies Initiative did [...]

Commentary By: Gloria

Under the guise of tax-breaks and incentives, Bush’™s plan to ‘œexpand’ medical coverage and reduce the number of uninsured Americans with the creation of tax-free savings accounts and resource pooling is a health insurers dream come true. Unfortunately, his snake-oil plan will do more damage to consumers and patients than the Clear Skies Initiative did to clean air.

The Foundation for Taxpayer & Consumer Rights explains that Associated Health Plans, AHP’™s, are just junk insurance and how Bush plans to sign into law legislation that will exempt them from accountability under current state guidelines.

Association health plans (AHPs) are sold through organizations for small employers or the self-employed. They are marketed as a way to provide large group discounts to small businesses. But the benefits aren’™t even as good as HMOs.

For instance, AHPs promise to pay 80% or 100% for most health treatments. But when policyholders get sick they discover that their plan caps the amount it will pay for hospitalization or serious illness’¦

The proposed legislation could exempt AHPs from state laws and regulations, which would allow AHPs to:

Eliminate coverage now required by the states of essential health services such as mammograms and diabetes.

Reject claims and refuse patients the right to appeal now guaranteed under state laws.

Maintain inadequate financial reserves, thereby defaulting on medical bills because they do not retain enough money to pay claims.

Drastically extend the time necessary to stop fraudulent insurance schemes because the federal government cannot shut down plans through immediate administrative action.

If we’™re lucky, the word will get out and it’™ll be DOA like the Social Security privatization scam.

Monday, January 30th, 2006 by Richard Blair |
Category: Healthcare

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