Fair Pair

Allowing insurance companies to offer health insurance without covering preexisting conditions is like allowing car manufactures to offer cars with no brakes.

That line from a previous post, Real Heal Deal, summarizes my suggestion to pair a Republican idea of Tort Reform with a Democratic idea of covering pre-existing conditions in all policies.

By making coverage of pre-existing conditions along with no lifetime cap and up to 26 years old for kids the rules of the road, we can get affordable, simple, sane coverage which will be good for business and people.  It will be really better for health insurance companies too via making the “rules of the road” clear and clean.

It is the Trump way to fulfill the Trump promise of covering pre-existing conditions.

The shell game of high risk pool will be the tipping point of the Republican Recovery Ship and sink it in the big drink.

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One of the things that Democrats have a hard time understanding is that lowering taxes can increase revenues.  This counterintuitive situation occurs due to increased volume of business from a flourishing of activity launched by the lower taxes.  The lower tax rate with a higher volume of stuff to tax brings a greater total tax revenue to the state as shown with Kennedy and Reagan. A similar thing that Republicans are having a hard time understanding is that making it a standard cost of doing business for health insurance companies being that they must cover preexisting conditions, children to age 26, no  and lifetime caps does not send premium costs through the roof as seen in ideal crucibles.

What those like the Freedom Caucus are not taking into account is savings gained with simplicity and clarity.  I am a Republican and have been buying health insurance for my small architectural practice for 24 years.  Then governor, now Senator Shaheen, ushered in passage to New Hampshire some years ago requirements for group insurance policies that they not allow screening out preexisting conditions.  While my party made a lot of political posturing about the great increase in premiums, I did not find the drift up that much more than other standard year to year increases.  My analysis as to why this occurred was that the companies could still make money and wanted to and so with competition sought my business by keeping premiums reasonable.

As an architect I know that if a set of drawings for a project are overly complicated with tons of unnecessary pages and details, the bids will come in higher.  I have to keep things clear and clean for the bidders to understand the apple with confidence and not be adding lots of additional slush fund contingencies for things that they haven’t even been able to look at because the drawings and specifications were too much.

Another example to show why I think the Freedom Caucus similar veins of my party are being too idealistic is the analogy of highways.  We all understand that there are good reasons for safety to have speed limits.  Not having speed limits would be freer and ideal but would clog our movement due to all the accidents.

We all know totally brilliant people who have no clue about common sense.  The Freedom Caucus is being brilliant ideally but showing little common sense on this topic.

Another perspective to look at this is that screening for preexisting conditions takes a lot of time and money for both insurer and insured that is such a waste of time and money.  Obviously it is hitting the insureds at tough times.  It also is limiting commerce with people seeking to stay in jobs when it doesn’t make sense for them just so they can stay with their current insurer who covered them before the condition was discovered.  This is horrible, inefficient, and a terrible loss of production for both employer and employee.

With healthcare legislation, we need to make some simple sane rules of the road and then open things wide open for intense competition to deliver the greatest value.

Of course as part of this the Exchange, needs to be totally ditched.  We need to be able to buy directly from insurance agencies and not be made to purchase our insurance through the Exchange who then, ever so ineptly, repurchase the policy for us from the insurance companies.  In 2015 the Exchange screwed things up so bad with me that for the first time in 24 years I had no coverage for 5 months and it was all unbeknownst to me.  I document this twilight zone horror here.

The Freedom Caucus and similar Republicans pushing for allowing for screening out preexisting conditions are asking President Trump to switch on a core campaign promise of his.  We need to respect the election and the elected.

Another piece to this puzzle is enacting a long standing Republican goal of Tort Reform.  As an architect, I have to take care and be ware of frivolous lawsuits pursuing deep pockets.  Doctors though are way way too hamstrung with these concerns at great cost to the consumers in both dollars and quality of service.

Another perspective that will help show hope and that we can actually get somewhere is Liberty Health Share.  This health sharing ministry started by the Mennonite Church is what I turned to in 2016 after my horrid experience with the Exchange.  They are not allowed to sell as a health insurance, but in my experience, it acts close enough for me.  While they are allowed to screen out preexisting conditions, Liberty does allow for a three year phase in for them to be covered.  In my case, three weeks after I started with them, my wife found a lipoma on my back.  After going through the rocky 2015 with the Exchange, I was pretty disheartened to be starting 2016 with something else.  I also wondered how it would shake out with coverage since it was something that was new to me being aware of so close to the start date.

We watched it for most of 2016 but, in the end it was decided that it should be removed in November.  Fortunately it was benign and fortunately Liberty covered it all.

I’d rather not get into quoting their rates here but leave it to you to pursue with them.  I will attest to them being tremendously reasonable and literally affordable.  They are also very professional, have clear documents, great phone support, and are pleasant.

Sure I can recommend people signing up with them, but more importantly, I think their rate structure and wonderful operation illustrate concretely where we can get to if we just make things clear, clean, simple, and sane.

I must add something here.  One of the really foolish things of the legislation that was pulled off the table on Friday was that it did not accommodate health sharing ministries like Liberty Health Share.  Obviously I hope, pray, and plead that these be allowed and studied as great models of hope for where we can get to in general.

Obviously, some may think I am hurting my case by sharing the faith based sharing example since they can screen for preexisting conditions.  My reason for adding this thread here is that I think health caring ministries illustrate that there is a lot of money for the making in running a health insurance company.  If health care ministries can be so very reasonable with their rates, I think there is hope for health insurance rates dropping by competition if we just get the rules sane.

So I say we need to make the rules of the road the same for all policies with coverage for preexisting conditions, 26 year dependents, pregnancy, annual checkups, no life time caps and, no community rating.  Then ditch the exchange and open up the competition wide with the interstate buys.  Pair all this with Tort Reform.  This will make healthcare salable, sane, simple, and affordable.

Published in: on 26 March 2017 at 9:56 pm  Leave a Comment  
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