Government Health Plan Would Devastate Hospitals

If just half of the patients who currently have private coverage enrolled in a public plan that paid low Medicare rates, many hospitals would go out of business. An analysis by America's Health Insurance Plans found that if all the patients treated in California hospitals were enrolled in a public plan paying rates 10 percent higher than Medicare, virtually none of the hospitals could cover their costs.

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  1. Larry C. says:

    Meanwhile the hospitals are being sold out by their national associations who seem desparate to do a deal with Obama and the Democrats in Congress. Go figure.

  2. Linda Gorman says:

    The hospital associations at the national and state levels feel that if they form a regulated cartel they will be able to make more money or at least have a nicer life (when nonprofits often take their profits in easier working conditions). Legislation in the states is aimed at hooking existing hospitals with good government relations directly into pools of tax money that favored players can spend without a lot of oversight from taxpayers or customers.

    This is rent seeking as usual by big business that doesn’t want to face competition.

  3. Brian says:

    And you would expect anything other from insurance companies? Pure hogwash and pure lies. Just another pathetic attempt to scare people. Look at the lowest average buisness costs and then look at the average charges for service. Multiply that by the annual use of services and you will actually see the phenominal success in profits that insurance and the entire medical provider field enjoys. Go broke????? Give me a break. Wouldn’t happen if medicare paid 50% less than what they pay right now. Typical lying from the insurance industry and so biased that the only good that newspaper item has is toilet-paper.

  4. Power2thepeople says:

    I’d really like to see where you get your figures, Brian. I hope you subtract all the equipment costs and unecessary medical testing and treatment that doctors feel compelled to do because of the malpractice problem, which by the way has yet to be addressed in any form or fashion by the current administration. Why? Because the trial lawyer lobby funded their campaigns. Medicare and medicaid have the lowest reimbursement. That is a fact. Private insurers base their rates, which are higher, off of the government programs. Fact. The only reason medicare/aid are not collapsing the system now is because they are not the majority of the patient population. The hospitals also cut costs by having in-training people treat them, like interns/residents with less experience. I for one can’t wait to be seen by a mass-produced trainee for my healthcare with no other option. yay! A majority of hospitals in this country are non-profit anyway, which means money they make gets put back into the system so you aren’t staying in a building that probably should have been condemned. If we want to tamp out greed, we should do our research to see what insurers and hospitals are putting back into the system via donations, etc. and exercise our right to choose our providers while we still have it. Oh wait, that would require that extra effort of being a responsible patient/citizen that we seem all too complacent to give up our freedoms up to avoid.

  5. says:

    It’s sad to see the same errors being repeated. We wrote to the Clinton transition team 16 years ago urging them to avoid repeating the fatal flaw in health insurance (i.e., “ ‘Health Insurance’ makes medical cost appear to be free to patients, physicians, and hospitals because it is not insurance.”) but the current reform efforts seem equally flawed.