Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Gardner: Obamacare -- Seven Months In

At the Wolf Files, guest blogger Brent Gardner discusses "Obamacare -- Seven Months In".

He notes how mandatory benefits and mandated coverage of pre-existing conditions raises costs for people and destroy the principle of rational pricing for insurance.

Here's an excerpt:
The lowest cost health insurance policy that I could sell (and purchase, at my current age) had a premium of $26 per month before the new law went into effect. Underwriting on this policy was reasonable, and the average person in America would qualify medically. Only one person in twenty could expect to be charged an extra premium, or declined coverage, for excessive pre-existing conditions. The policy would do exactly what it was designed to do: Keep the insured out of bankruptcy due to an extraordinary medical event, a catastrophic sickness or injury.

Today, that policy is not available. The insurance company looked at the new law, all the mandates that were being forced on them, and they decided that their capital was better employed in another line of business. The result was that my favorite low-premium policy was withdrawn from the market.

The least expensive alternative available today is $64 per month, subject to much stricter medical underwriting with a different company. The average slightly overweight American would not qualify for this policy, and one can forget about it if they smoke, have one traffic ticket, or take ANY prescription pills. I know this from first hand experience.

In the simplest of terms, the absolute lowest toll for major medical insurance has more than doubled, and it is more difficult to obtain.

But...there's more!...
(Read the full text of "Obamacare -- Seven Months In".)