Friday, November 1, 2013

A brief history of health insurance - why obamacare is a failure

A brief history of health insurance – or why some of us knew that obamacare would be a flop.

**This is my personal opinion and is full of sarcasm, it is not meant to be entirely accurate**

Many years ago, most people did not have insurance.  However, back then there were lots of “nonprofit” hospitals that would gladly take anyone without insurance.  When my first two children were born we paid the hospital $100 a month for 10 months to cover all of the expenses.  The money went directly to the hospital or doctors, there were no middlemen.  Eventually those “nonprofit” hospitals were bought out and bulldozed.  Hospitals are now in the business of making money.

Then after that change, there was what is called “Major medical” insurance.  It cost our employer about $1000 a year and it covered everything medical that totaled over $2000.  We kept all of the paperwork ourselves and then submitted it at the end of the year.  Our insurance company then sent us a check for everything that totaled over $2000.  We then used that money to cover the medical expenses for the next year. 

Then disaster struck.  Our wonderful government thought that it would fix the “problems” with health insurance.  They passed laws that invented what is called an “HMO”.  HMO insurance included “Free” physicals and many other “free” things because, as we all well know, if you see the doctor for free you will not get sick and hence you will save a lot of money.  HMO’s also required that the primary care doctor would do all of the paperwork so he had to hire two or three secretaries just to process all of that paperwork.  HMO’s would save money because the doctor would detect problems earlier and you would not get as sick.  OK, maybe the premiums would go up a little because someone had to pay for all of the secretaries to process the paperwork and someone had to pay for all of those “free” physicals, etc.  Insurance went from $1000 a year to $10,000 a year.  Thanks to the US government for figuring out how to save us money.  As a result many people were no longer insured.

Then along comes more help from the “experts” on saving money.   Yes ObamaScare to the rescue!  His idea was that if those who were well paid a little [lot] more they could cover the expenses of those who were sick.  He also eliminated being refused insurance because of “preexisting” conditions.  He also included coverage for a lot of things like abortions and sex changes.  Of course someone has to pay for all of those new extra benefits.  On top of that, if you had insurance that did not include all of the new extra benefits, it has to be cancelled.  So as a result about 1/2 to 3/4 of those with insurance will find that their insurance is now cancelled.  However they will not be able to afford the increased premiums, to pay for those that are already sick, so in the end as much as 1/2 or more of the population will be left without any health insurance.

On top of that there is the now delayed “Employer Mandate”.  Any company with more than a few employees is required to give “free” health care insurance to all of its full time employees.  The solution is simple, make them “part time” employees.  This led to massive job reductions and that led the “Employer Mandate” being delayed until after the election.    

Now if we were to go back to directly paying the doctors we could cut the cost in half because all middle men (insurance companies) do is increase the cost of seeing your doctor.  Remember ObamaScare is not medical coverage, it is health insurance, there is a huge difference there.


Zeph said...

Hi, Bob,

Love your technical stuff. The history of health care isn't very factually accurate, alas - it must be based on some soft sources. I don't want to argue, just pass on a word to the wise, that some of the objectivity that makes circuits and code work could be applied to doing some solid research on health care using non-political sources. Best regards.

Bob Davis said...

I was speaking out of my personal experience. I did not verify things as I was speaking of what has personally happened to me.