Wednesday, January 5, 2011

High Risk Health Insurance Pools

I can't find the link for the article, but there was an article on the high risk insurance pools that are supposed to insure people who can't get insurance because of pre-existing conditions, a stopgap until the new federal insurance rules prohibit denial of insurance for pre-existing conditions in 2014. Very few people have signed up, but those who have are costing the system huge amounts of money. Well, duh!

Most of the people denied private individual policies don't have very expensive illnesses. In fact, many of them aren't sick at all. They've had accidents or illnesses in the past that insurers are afraid might cost in the future. If you had childhood asthma, you're uninsurable because you might, once you pass 40, get it back again. If you ever had joint surgery, you're uninsurable because you might develop arthritis in the joint in your 50s. A broken bone, a concussion, any unexplained fever, can be grounds for denial.

But insurance through the high risk pools costs a lot of money--$5-6,000 a year. So people without insurance who are generally healthy are likely to take the risk and wait until 2014. Those who buy the insurance have serious illnesses that cost lots of money. For people who have cancer or heart disease or uncontrolled high blood pressure, the insurance is a necessity. If you had asthma as a kid, but are reasonably healthy now, you could drop $18,000 down a black hole, or just wait until 2014.

You wonder if reporters ever think. How could they not have figured this out from the beginning?

Ngram: Bourgeoisie and proletariat have common trajectories. Bourgeoisie outdoes proletariat very slightly until about 1910, but proletariat remains more common until the late 1950s. Then bourgeoisie becomes more common, reaching its high point in the late 1970s. Both have been on a downward trajectory since. And it appears that they're linked, as they rise and fall together through most of the 20th century.

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