You Probably Thought the Public Option Was Dead

Trying to spur enrollment in a key new benefit of the 2010 health law, the Obama administration announced today it is slashing premiums for new high-risk insurance plans and no longer requiring applicants to submit a rejection letter from private insurers…

The premiums will drop as much as 40 percent in 17 states plus the District where the federally administered plans operates…

To further generate interest in the plans, HHS this fall will begin paying insurance agents and brokers for signing up people.

Comments (5)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Devon Herrick says:

    One of the reasons people give for not signing up for the high risk pool is because premiums were relatively high — as they should be. A risk pool cannot sustain itself if people are allowed to wait until they are sick to sign up. In one interview, a man with HIV had campaigned vigorously for the high-risk pool and access to affordable insurance for those with pre-existing conditions. Once he discovered his premiums would be more than $300 a month, he balked — explaining that $300 plus a month was as much as a car payment. The commentator writing the article (Maggie Mahar of Health Beat blog as I recall) wondered why would someone with pre-existing conditions not consider access to health coverage as valuable as a moderately priced car?

  2. Larry C. says:

    This is unsettling.

  3. Ken says:

    This is ridiculous. It’s an attempt by the Obama administration to set up a public entity in direct competition with private insurance.

  4. Brian Williams. says:

    Paying a rebate to insurance agents for sending their customers to the government plan? That seems fishy…

  5. Linda Gorman says:

    Same thing they did with SCHIP when enrollment was below expectations. Sweetened the incentives, made eligibility easier. Now all you hear about is how enrollment is exceeding expectations and the program is absolutely invaluable.