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View Diary: Insurers widen profits by narrowing choice of doctors (96 comments)

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  •  This is exactly what should have been expected. (4+ / 0-)
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    Willa Rogers, valion, VClib, TJ

    The ACA depends on a private insurance market, and that private insurance market depends on the insurers making profits.  If they don't make profits, they don't stay in business, and nobody gets insurance.

    I'm not sure why people here are writing about "insurance companies want to make profits" as if that's surprising, or wrong, or whatever.  That's the system that Congress passed and the President signed into law.  OF COURSE insurance companies are structuring things so as to be assured of making profits.  Under this system, that is what they are supposed to do.  If they don't make profits, this system does not work.

    Maybe Congress and the President should not have doubled down on a private, for profit health insurance system. I completely understand that argument.  But that is what they did -- design a system that depended on a private, for-profit industry.  And since that is what they did, it really seems disingenuous to me for people who support the ACA to complain that insurance companies are trying to make sure they make profits.  Really, what did you THINK insurance companies were going to do?

    This is exactly correct:  

    With the Affordable Care Act, health plans lost two of their historically big plan pricing variables; medical underwriting and plan design.
    Insurance is about gauging risk, and balancing that against cost to the customer so that the insurance company makes money.  If -- as the ACA did -- you take away their ability in one area to make profits, they will look for ways to do it in other areas.  

    Of course, they need to stay within the bounds of the law.  I do not mean to excuse any violation of law.    

    But even if they stay within the boundaries of the law, I am not saying it's good, or moral, or anything like that, for insurance companies to make profits.  But it's not bad, or immoral.  It's "amoral" -- morality has nothing to do with it. Whether we like them or not, insurance companies have to stay profitable for this system to work.   This is the system Congress and the President gave us -- and under that system, the insurance companies have to make profits.

    So nobody should look surprised, or outraged, when that's exactly what they do.  

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