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Sunday, July 23, 2017

Echo from Utah- The Deseret News: Old & sick on your own

Senator Mike Lee from Utah must be reading his state's newsaper opinons, like this one: (An Echo among my letter to the editor series.)

Priced out of market- The Deseret News letter to the editor

BOUNTIFUL, Utah- Sen. Mike Lee served notice he would vote against the Republican health care bill if it did not include the Cruz Amendment. That amendment would allow insurance companies to sell “junk” policies in the individual exchanges (policies that don’t cover much of anything, such as hospital visits, maternity care or pre-existing conditions) as long as they also offer policies that include the benefits that Obamacare considers essential for meaningful health care protection. (Maine Writer: In other words, a choice that eliminates "choice".  The beneficiary pays for one plan with no coverage or accepts the resulting higher premium costs for plans that provide essential benefits. Crazy! Insurance doesn't work this way and Senator Lee knows it! Pooling people like this doesn't serve anybody except to drive up insurance company profit margins because the junk premiums won't be paying out any benefits!)

According to health experts, grouping the young and healthy into one insurance pool will drive down the price for their “junk” policies and drive up the price of policies for the sick and the elderly. As the sick are priced out of their market, revenues will dry up and their market will implode. (MaineWriter- Those who are healthy and young will pay "junk" premiums but receive no essential benefits.)

It reminds of this comment by Anatole France: “The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich and the poor alike from sleeping under bridges, begging in the streets and stealing bread.” So it is with the Cruz-Lee Amendment. In its majestic concern for freedom of choice, it would preserve for the healthy and the sick alike their freedom to purchase meaningful health care coverage at prices that only the rich can afford.

Nelda Bishop  Bountiful, Utah

Postscript from MaineWriter- This Cruz-Lee amendment makes no sense whatsoever! Even the insurance companies oppose it because there is no way the "actuarial analysis" can safely predict the risk/benefits of coverage when only healthy people are in one pool, while just the sick and frail are in another. At some point, one of the pools will go bankrupt because of the lack of actuarial integrity spread across all insured populations.  In other words, one healthy person's un-anticipated sickness can bankrupt the entire "healthy person" pool. Stop this madness and go back to improving the Affordable Care Act, because it's working!

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