« »

Thursday, November 14, 2013

White House announces ‘fix’ for cancellations

Not sure it’s the way I would’ve gone, but here’s the skinny on it.

Wall Street Journal: The Obama plan, which the official said could be implemented without passing legislation, would allow insurance companies to extend “substandard” plans in 2014 only if they are already in existence. Unlike the House bill, the administration plan wouldn’t allow insurance companies to offer such plans to new customers.

The policy also would require insurance companies, if they extend such policies, to notify these customers that alternative policies might be available under the government insurance exchange and to tell them what benefits they wouldn’t be getting if they remained with their current plans.
A little bit of a gamble, but not much of one. Ever since the cancellations controversy began, I saw “If you like your plan, you can keep it” as a bet. The idea was that the exchanges would be up and running, you’d find out what was available to you, and you wouldn’t like your old policy anymore.

And this is one way to keep that gamble alive. Insurers offering these junk plans have to tell customers they are junk plans and point out what it is that’s wrong with the policies. Then consumer can eventually go see for themselves what’s what and — unless they’re so insanely opposed to Obamacare that they’d lose money rather than participate — make the switch.

We’ll see how people who have a better grasp of the intricacies of the economics of Obamacare take it, but for now, it doesn’t seem like the worst way to handle things. Faint praise, I know. But I’d rather not gamble at all, so I’m still not convinced it’s the best.

[photo via Wikimedia Commons]

Search Archive:

Custom Search