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View Diary: Why We Need the Public Option, and Why Co-ops Don't Fit the Bill (176 comments)

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  •   A dissenting view in defense of co-ops (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    zonk, FreeStateDem

    All of the objections made are based on the idea of small, regional co-ops. What progressives should be calling for is a large national co-op for health insurance, which would address all of these problems.

    1. the idea that a co-op will be too slow to start up doesn't make a lot of sense because the current House bill wouldn't be implemented until 2013, which is plenty of time to get a co-op system going. I think a co-op could be set up faster than the public plan.
    1. "such models would also require forfeiting another major advantage of a Medicare-like public plan: the ability to provide enrollees with a broad choice of providers." The fact that two small existing co-ops use this model is no reason why a national co-op would have to.
    1. The past failure of small co-ops is no reason to expect that a national co-op would fail.
    1. A national co-op would not "lack the means to restrain cost increases or drive delivery or payment reforms on a broad scale."

    As I noted in my diary today, if progressives push for a strong national co-op, we will be more likely to succeed (since all of the attacks have been aimed at a government-run plan), we will have a better system than a constrained public plan, and we will have an institution less vulnerable to political corruption from the next Republican administration.

    Yes, the idea of co-ops came up as a political compromise. But it can be turned into a great idea.

    Obama Politics (

    by JohnKWilson on Thu Aug 20, 2009 at 01:33:19 PM PDT

    •  Agreed (0+ / 0-)

      There was a very good diary here on the Seattle based Group Health plan.

      I guess everyone's got their own blog now.

      by zonk on Thu Aug 20, 2009 at 01:40:43 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  If we were able to get a "strong" national co-op (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Egalitare, FreeStateDem

      in the final bill as opposed to small/regional co-ops, and if it were just as good as a robust public option would be, the Republicans and the Blue Cross Dems would be just as opposed to it.  They want reform to fail, and they're not going to get behind something if it actually offers the prospect of successfully reforming the system.

      -7.12, -7.54 / "Health care reform will never take place until Rahm Emanuel is strangled with the entrails of Frank Luntz." - Diderot

      by Big Tex on Thu Aug 20, 2009 at 01:46:58 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Amateurs vs professionals (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      "Coop" has that nice fuzzy you-and-your-neighbors feel to it. Bunk, but that's the appeal.

      A national coop by definition would be just another huge non-profit (like our friends at Blue Cross used to be). It is no more a real co-op in terms of governance than a mutual insurance company is. There are not going to be warm fuzzy town meetings to talk about, say, whether to cover gender change surgery, or how high your co-pays should be.

      I just don't see why this is an advantage over letting younger people buy into Medicare, which to me is the simplest solution.

    •  I don't see how we can possibly reduce costs (0+ / 0-)

      By creating yet another private, publicly-funded entity.  We'll be getting screwed on both ends, and how will they possibly compete with the other companies enough to bring prices down?

      Profit and the middleman need to be taken out of the equation altogether!

      Save the parrots: Drink shade-grown coffee!

      by oscarsmom on Thu Aug 20, 2009 at 02:14:52 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  A series of Seattle sized or larger... (0+ / 0-)

      ...along side a Public Option you can probably sell to most of us. If people want to chose the Puget Sound model, so be it. But it is likely to actually be used only in a handful of places which are densely populated enough to get both a critical mass of enrollees and enough physicians willing to be part of an community experience.

      But as someone has already posted, the GOP has already declared Co-ops as "goverment healthcare by a different name." They are only interested in securing our well over 47 million uninsured (and BTW many millions of underinsured) as new enrollees for Big Health Insurance, subsidized by the Federal Government.

      And they'll blame us for increasing the deficit because of it.

      Medicare: Government-run Health Care since 1965

      by Egalitare on Thu Aug 20, 2009 at 02:27:04 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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