What good is a new health care program if it guarantees you can keep your doctor, but you’re doctor has no interest in seeing you any more? President Obama knows full-well health care providers will not be able to compete as the government is able to under-cut premiums and subsidize the loss using tax dollars. It really is that simple.
Businesses that currently provide health care benefits may end up offering a mix of government and private plans to employees. In the beginning, government plans will have a strong following simply due to significantly lower premiums.
Face it, there will need to be a huge subsidy associated with the government plans to get people to sign up. Why is that? Since everyone is saying the problem is the cost of insurance, those government premiums are going to be cheap, really cheap.
If government plans offered the same benefits and were only 10 percent cheaper, why would anyone be stupid enough to go the government route compared to private insurance?
Normally, the service, quality and cost relationship would come into play at this point. Chances are those who signed up for government plans will be happy with the price, but it will come at a cost – quality and service could become unacceptable.
In the private arena, a health insurance provider who has low prices but terrible service and quality would need to fix the imbalance or die. The government does not have to worry about such trivial things since they have a captive audience who can’t get out, unless of course they can afford the higher premiums of the higher service and quality plans.
There is some hope. The service and quality could be so bad that subscribers will opt out of the government plans all together. But my guess is – like Massachusetts- Obama will require that everyone be insured or they would get fined almost equal to the cost of their crappy plans.
Seeing the picture here?
The result could be …
- Two levels of care for Americans – one for those in government plans and an other for those in a private plans.
- Physicians will opt-out (as they are doing with Medicare) of government plans since reimbursement rates will be lower than their costs. (So much for keeping your own doctor.)
- If physicians are ordered to stay in, chances are they are going to find a different line of work.
- Health care companies will be unable to make money. Since profit is a reason most of these companies exist – and employees demand to get paid for services – health insurance companies may turn into property and casualty insurance carriers.
Insurance carriers – unlike the federal government – do not have the luxury of tapping into the general fund to get some additional capital to pay expenses or borrow billions from China. This imbalance in health care will result in a much more serious situation than we are in right now.
Others who have more the last couple of days…
Of course, it’s been a hot topic on Sound Off Connecticut all week too. Stay informed!