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From a reader/listener:

John Boehner said that if only a portion of Obamacare is struck down, he will move to repeal the parts that were left intact. I agree that some parts of the law are popular but they can be replaced with other statutes that can also be popular, such as allowing Insurance companies to compete across state lines. That would boost their revenues and increase the number of people paying into the system, since that should lower premiums. I don’t presume to have all the answers available in this email, but I expect the answers ARE available from those more in touch with the issue than I am.

The pre-existing condition issue should be factored in the risk assessment and the premiums will likely reflect that increased risk. I doubt we’ll get through this without increasing our costs, no matter what decision they come up with. I do not think that those who have pre-existing conditions should pay more. The whole concept of insurance is spreading the risk across the entire base, so I’m in favor of the premium reflecting the entire cost to all. But, again, I don’t suggest I have the ultimate solution.

Car insurance charges drivers more according to what kind of car they drive, their age group, AND past driving history. That is also a bit unfair, as I don’t feel I should be charged more because my car CAN go 150 MPH. If don’t drive my car at 150 MPH, I don’t see why I should pay more because my car COULD go faster than any another car. Life insurance doesn’t cost more for those people who use a knife and a fork. After all, they COULD stab somebody while using that knife…. or fork.

I agree that the private sector will handle the insurance costs better than the government will. I believe the costs to cover those with pre-existing conditions should be spread through the group. That’s what insurance does. It spreads the risk. If everyone conditions are covered at all times, there wouldn’t be any “pre” to any condition. If 5% of the public has diabetes, then insurance companies should figure that 5% of their insured will have diabetes. The problem develops when insurance companies try to beat the odds and work it so they cover less than that 5%. Smoking has a direct cause and effect, so smokers own poor judgement increases their need for health care, and hence, they should be charged more. But diabetes is not caused by ones own poor judgement, so those who suffer from diabetes should not be charged more because they have that decease.

The 47 million people that don’t have medical coverage, don’t have it because they can’t afford it. If they require medical attention and they have NO coverage, they get the medical attention they need, because it’s the humane thing to do, but they are billed and the bill can remain unpaid. Collection procedures aren’t effective at collecting what is owed. There is also something to be said about hospitals charging $10 and $15 for an aspirin. I suppose their needs to be some sort of reform made to the medical industry. Minor illnesses and out-patient procedures really don’t need the attention of specialists.

Lower level medical providers could handle lower level health issues, or some other procedure could be put in place to lower the extraordinary cost of health care. My point here is; Not every heath related issue requires a Doctor or a specialist. I currently see a “Physician’s Assistant” for most of my health care, and I’m sure he earns less than the Doctor that is his “Supervisor.” Yet, my costs have not been reduced since I started seeing him instead of the Doctor. Where did the savings go?

There needs to be a some sort of consumer representation in the discussions which effect medical costs. If these decisions are left to the AMA and insurance companies alone, the cost will NEVER be fair to the consumer. It will ALWAYS be as costly as the insurance companies decide to make it. The drug developers contribute to healthcare costs in the same way. They have no oversight either. There are pills that cost $50 each. Research and Development just shouldn’t push the cost of a pill to that price.

I’m fed up.

Roger Gangitano

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