Sunday, October 01, 2006

Fixing High Health Care Insurance Premiums

Did that title get your attention? I wish the body of this post could provide what the title suggests. Unfortunately, all it offers is more griping.

According to a recent article in The AARP Bulletin, two states, Massachusetts and Vermont, have made inroads into providing some sort of universal health care to their residents.

That's great. More states should look into this remarkable attempt at providing relief from high health care insurance premiums.

But there is one thing these new plans do not consider. As long as the current trend of the COSTS of treatment keep increasing, so too will the costs of the premiums. So even if some states can manage to make the costs of premiums more affordable for all of its constituents, in a few years the costs will become unmanageable and they will be back in the same boat again.

Let's say current average premiums for a family of four were $1200 per month in State X. The state's government creates a law that allows the typical family to get the same level of coverage for half the cost - $600 a month. The state's populace swoons, the media swarm the lawmakers, and more states are focusing their attention on State X and how they brought many thousands of formerly under- or uninsured families back into the covered health care fold.

But in the years that follow, new, exciting (read: expensive) medical breakthroughs occur, as well as new, powerful drugs hit the marketplace. Someone's got to pay for all these bold new treatments and that would be who it's always been - the insured.

Before you know it, that $600 a month premium has crept back up to an unaffordable level, and our hapless family of four in State X is back to where they were.

Bottom line - until state or federal government officials work to bring the total costs of health care down by great amounts, no effort to reduce current insurance premiums will have more than a short-term effect.

1 Comments:

At Thursday, July 17, 2008 2:20:00 AM, Blogger Dallas Health said...

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