The Evil Insurance Giants – everyone hates them, but who are they? WellPoint? UnitedHealth Group? Not exactly; in these times those evil insurance giants are likely to be your employers. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, 55% of covered workers were in self-insured plans in 2007. Since the the trend towards employers funding the own health insurance has increased.
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi may make a raucous show of vilifying the insurance industry because it’s an easy way of garnering support for the Liberals’ healthcare agenda, but her claims, no matter how loud and shrill, bear only a marginal and passing acquaintance with the objective truth of the matter.
Rep. Nancy Pelosi prefers class warfare to truth.
She recently lashed out at the health insurance industry and urged Liberals to do the same during the August recess.
“They are the villains in this,” Pelosi said of private insurers. “They have been part of the problem in a major way. They are doing everything in their power to stop a public option from happening. And the public has to know that. They can disguise their arguments any way they want, but the fact is that they don’t want the competition.”
“It’s almost immoral what they are doing,” added Pelosi, who stood outside her office long after her press conference ended to continue speaking to reporters, even as aides tried in vain to usher her inside. “Of course they’ve been immoral all along in how they have treated the people that they insure with pre-existing conditions, you know, the litany of it all.”
But when the painful echoes of the Speaker’s tirade fade away, we’re still left with a problem – the facts. As the White House blog reminded us, “facts are stubborn things;” they don’t go away just because you scream lies and engage in hatemongering to further your agenda.
A majority of larger employers self-fund their employees health insurance benefits. A self-funded health insurance plan is an insurance arrangement in which the employer assumes direct financial responsibility for the costs of enrollees’ medical claims. Employers sponsoring self-funded plans typically contract with a third-party administrator or insurer solely to provide administrative services for the self-funded plan.
2007 Statistics for Self-Funded Plans:
12% of workers in small firms( <200 workers) with employer-provided health insurance are in self-funded plans
53% of workers in mid-sized firms (200 – 999 workers) with employer-provided health insurance are in self-funded plans
76% of workers in large firms (1000 – 4999 workers) with employer-provided health insurance are in self-funded plans
86% of workers in very large firms (5000+ workers) with employer-provided health insurance are in self-funded plans
Any of the amendments, codicils, and/or provisions in the America’s Affordable Health Choices Act of 2009 (AAHCA) that affect the required coverage to be a “qualifying plan” or expand the coverage requirements (part-time workers) are not going to directly negatively impact those “immoral villains” in the health insurance industry. They’re going to directly negatively impact the large segment of American employers who self-fund their employees’ health benefits.
Would anyone care to guess how many of the real “Evil Insurance Giants” will drop their health benefits offerings, pay the penalty tax for doing so because it’s cheaper than meeting the government’s requirements, and just let their employees purchase the Public Option?
Are you still so sure you’ll be able to keep your current health insurance if you like it?