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Are increasing by 15-30% each year since the ACA became law.  

I hear it everywhere and from everyone in the media.

I haven't heard a single article or report that questions that premise.

Even though health insurance costs are only increasing by single digit percentages, premiums have been increasing by double digit percentages.

I haven't heard a single reporter investigate this blatantly obvious disparity between cost and price.

And this doesn't even take into account the decreases in reimbursement costs for office visits, labs, imaging, pharmaceuticals etc.  the insurance companies have been making every year.

Every year people continue to pay more and more on health care while receiving less and less in return.  Each year physicians are getting paid less and less by insurance companies.  Physicians can't have their own business because they don't have any control over the price of their services.  People pay insurance companies a large amount of money, they dont want to pay a doctor as well, and they shouldn't have to.

Insurance companies control their customers and they control the medical industry.  They not only have complete control over the price of their product but they set the prices on the services of the entire medical industry.  Physicians have no say about the worth of their services.  Individual physicians have no way to negotiate with these huge insurance corporations.  In fact limiting the options of their customers has been a profitable strategy these insurances have invented and is increasing each year.

The ACA would never have become necessary if the insurance industry didn't have complete control over America's health care system's finances.  Hopefully Americans will come to understand that insurance companies have no true purpose except to make a profit.  And they are profiting because they set the prices of their product as well as the prices they pay for the services their product is contracted to provide.

Most physicians make less per year than people who sell group health insurance.  And these sales people are paid to sell people the weakest product at the highest price.  They are successful because they make these health insurance plans so complicated that very few people actually understand what they are buying.

The real travesty in this is that people even the healthy ones have come to expect and accept a rise in their insurance premiums every year instead of expecting the cost to decrease each year you remain healthy.  Ignoring the fact that most of the increases in health care costs come from Medicare recipients, not from the private insurance population.

The health insurance has managed to convince everyone that premiums are no longer cumulative, they aren't an investment for your future, they aren't even a bargaining chip to use to negotiate next year's contract.  It's as if they never existed.  Like all contracts today, your past history means nothing when your contract is up.  You can either sign another one or go somewhere else.  

Annual contracts are the health insurances greatest achievement.  Once your contract is up, your money is gone.  The money you've spent is gone and has little or no negotiating power on another contract.

When did we give health insurance companies the power to choose the physician we see, determine their own prices and convince us all that a lifetime of insurance payments is not an investment in the future.

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Comment Preferences

  •  The go-to expert in this discussion is (7+ / 0-)

    Wendell Potter. As he testified in Congress

    A new report from the Urban Institute calls into question the findings of the insurer-backed studies used by the industry to support their claims about premium increases. Of course, insurers’ coordinated attack on the law fails to consider many important factors, and, as a result, their use of these studies intentionally misleads the public. Among the factors that are not considered: The fact that only a small percentage of young adults will be affected, while many people at the other end of the age band will see enormous benefits that allow them to stay covered and maintain their health; The serious deficiencies in today’s coverage, particularly in the low-value, minimal-benefit coverage marketed to young people. Banning junk insurance policies—while maintaining access to low-cost policies—will mean Americans will be able to purchase real coverage that protects them from financial ruin if they happen to fall ill; The fact that discriminatory practices priced many people out of the market, allowing for artificially-low premiums for others; and finally, The availability of premium tax credits, which will dramatically reduce costs for many consumers.
    Anyone who believes that insurance premiums wll stabilize or decrease with repeal of ACA, will believe that Congresswoman Bachmann was a truth teller.
  •  The California rates have been getting attention. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LI Mike, jfromga

    I think the Exchange rates for other states will get attention as they're rolled out.

    Hopefully, they'll all be as impressively low as California's.

    But, in the end, we can't expect the corporate media to do anything but the Repubs' bidding, so it's up to us to spread the word.

  •  That's because (4+ / 0-)
    I haven't heard a single reporter investigate this blatantly obvious disparity between cost and price.
    isn't true. In fact, premiums have not been increasing nearly as fast as they had been. In part, this is because the law limits the difference between the amount spent on care and premiums. Did you miss the part where people got rebate checks last year?

    Certainly from our standpoint, this gives us a sense of momentum -- when the United States has accolades tossed its way, rather than shoes. - PJ Crowley

    by nsfbr on Thu May 30, 2013 at 04:30:35 AM PDT

  •  "impressively low" is a relative term (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    radical simplicity, luckylizard

    I make in the low forties. The ACA will cost me about $6k. That's about what I was saving for retirement. I should make it anyway, and the out of pocket cap may help a ton if my luck goes south, but is it worth it? For me probably, but if I had a family it would be financial murder - with my income and location (San Francisco) it would be an insurance or rent (I would not own a home) decision.
    I will say it - I believe that the goal of the ACA was not to provide health care, but to defuse the admittedly weak movement toward single payer before the public was forced by reality to admit it is necessary.
    Don't say, "don't make the perfect the enemy of the good", say, "don't make the better the enemy of the necessary".

  •  I think opponents of ACA will come to regret (7+ / 0-)

    their strategy of exaggerating the impact of the law on premiums. As the recent and notoriously misrepresented CNN poll found, 16% of respondents did not think the law went far enough - on top of 40% who already favored the law.

    The genie of universal health care is out of the bottle now  and the miserable creature of compromise that is the ACA will not be fixed by going backwards. It may turn out that the only truly important provision in the ACA is the one that allows states to create their own single payer systems (Medicare for all). All the hand-wringing about rising costs will simply hasten the transition to the next step - at least in the blue states. A California single-payer system would be 25% larger the Canada's health care system.

    •  The Genie is at the Hospital (0+ / 0-)

      That 70/30 insurance will not keep your home when your health goes South.  Read Steve Brill in Time to learn more from the real world.  There are zero controls on HC providers.  Insurance just represents the 30% of dollars spent that goes to the rentiers.  The rest still has no cost controls.

      •  Steve Brill (0+ / 0-)

        Inside Story on Medical Bills

        Steven Brill spent seven months analyzing hundreds of bill from hospitals, doctors, and drug companies and medical equipment manufacturers to find out who is setting such high prices and pocketing the biggest profits. What he discovered, outlined in detail in the cover story of the new issue of TIME, will radically change the way you think about our medical institutions:

        · Hospitals arbitrarily set prices based on a mysterious internal list known as the “chargemaster.” These prices vary from hospital to hospital and are often ten times the actual cost of an item. Insurance companies and Medicare pay discounted prices, but don’t have enough leverage to bring fees down anywhere close to actual costs. While other countries restrain drug prices, in the United States federal law actually restricts the single biggest buyer—Medicare—from even trying to negotiate the price of drugs.

        · Tax-exempt “nonprofit” hospitals are the most profitable businesses and largest employers in their regions, often presided over by the most richly compensated executives.

        You really need to print out the whole piece and keep for reference as the campaign season opens up...
  •  This family of 4 has already benefited (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jfromga

    because the kids can get insurance no matter what, and I can hardly wait for 2014, we will be at the head of the line. Kids will be free under medicaid and we will have vastly subsidized premiums.

    I have an arm that doesn't work and needs a ligament re attached. All kinds of basic care that has been neglected for years. I can travel and get dentistry.

    One stop shopping online to compare plans.

    I can't wait.

    How big is your personal carbon footprint?

    by ban nock on Thu May 30, 2013 at 06:33:36 AM PDT

  •  Mine is going down... (0+ / 0-)

    as of July1.  I'll get to keep another $20 a month.  It's not a king's ransom, but it helps.

    -7.62, -7.28 "Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die, life is a broken winged bird that cannot fly." -Langston Hughes

    by luckylizard on Thu May 30, 2013 at 09:26:51 AM PDT

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