Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Health mess

Of course, I'm not a big supporter of the president's plan as far as health care is concerned. I am, however, of the opinion that our health care system could use some modifying. So, to extend an olive branch to reform, I offer the following two-step health care "overhaul" proposal:

1. The government will offset the cost of health insurance for those claiming a net income of $50,000 a year or less.
a. The plan would pay 50% of insurance premiums for those clearing $50K up to 100% for those making less than $30K.
b. Insurance companies eligible for the plan would be the same who participate in the Federal Employee Health Benefit Program. The government wouldn't have to re-contract for a new program, just extend a pre-existing program.
c. VOLUNTARY, not mandatory.

2. If a health-care provider has an agreement to accept a particular insurance provider, that health-care provide will only be allowed to charge the amount that is the negotiated price between the insurance company and the health-care provider.
a. Deductibles are still in place.
b. Every bit of a procedure should be covered - anesthesia, misc. materials, etc.

In point 1, Americans get their health care subsidized but generally not free. Competition is still in place in that there are several insurance providers available to choose from. The program puts the onus upon the consumer to sign up.

Point 2 is an ongoing contentious one with me. I can't help but be frustrated that when you go in for a procedure, you pay your deductible, and then you still have to wind up paying hundreds if not thousands more because the health-care provider still charged way more than the "negotiated amount." Torques me off.

Anyway, that's my plan. It's not perfect and it would be expensive, but it's a lot better than what I hear being thrown around the Hill right now.

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