Well, Blue Cross Blue Shield is definitely one of the largest providers of health insurance in this country. Being one of the largest, they DEFINITELY have a huge interest in how the public plan will roll out.
Thus, comes their definite and final argument AGAINST any public plan.
And again, people in this country are not asleep at the wheel. If Blue Cross Blue Shield gives the BEST coverage for the dollar, then hey, they should have no problems competing with a public plan. But when you start to run SCARED, as BCBS is doing, along with threats which are out there, and with lobbyists writing big checks to these weak knee senators on the hill, FOLKS WE HAVE A FIGHT ON OUR HANDS.
emphasis below is mine's
The insurance industry Tuesday laid down a marker on health care, warning in stark terms that a proposed government insurance plan would dismantle the employer coverage Americans have relied on for a half century and overtake the system.
In a joint letter to senators, the two largest industry groups also said they don't believe it's possible to design a government plan that can compete fairly with private companies in a revamped health care market. That particular statement seemed to be aimed at lawmakers of both parties who are seeking a compromise on the contentious issue.
Not compete fairly?
Blue Cross Blue Shield is also one of the health care providers that are STICKLERS on pre-existing conditions. They are notorious for throwing folks off their plan or raise the premiums so high, the payments are unaffordable for most Americans. This same company is notorious for continuing to raise Americans health care premiums, while consistently striking and reducing coverage in many plans.
So, now Blue Cross Blue Shield is extremely worried about a public plan or public option, CUTTING INTO THEIR market? Blue Cross Blue Shield, if you were on the up and up with people, you would have no problems. The question is have you been? And I can answer that question, "NO".
Recent media polls have found strong public support for the idea of a government plan. It would compete with private companies to offer coverage to individuals and small businesses, but eventually might be opened to large employers as well. The positive public reaction to the idea has emboldened liberals, who are arguing that Democrats shouldn't compromise.
The insurers suggested a government plan would run counter to Obama's promise that Americans can keep the coverage they have.
"A government-run plan no matter how it is initially structured would dismantle employer-based coverage, significantly increase costs for those who remain in private coverage, and add additional liabilities to the federal budget," said the letter from AHIP chief Karen Ignagni and Scott Serota, the head of Blue Cross.
Here we go with the talking point that insurance companies are arming the week knee Democratic senators and minority led Republicans, "A public plan will destroy your coverage. You will not be able to keep your doctor....." The real untold story is the FEAR that big, large companies which BCBS have as customers, will look at the advantage and cost of a public plan and compare it with BCBS and decide to go with the public plan.
This is nothing new, here. As, President Obama has just indicated during his press conference, why would any insurance company be concerned or upset with a public plan if their coverage is sound and what the public wants.
The notion that all these insurance companies who say they’re giving consumers the best possible deal, if they can’t compete against a public plan as one option, with consumers making the decision what’s the best deal, that defies logic, which is why I think you’ve seen in the polling data overwhelming support for a public plan.
That is the crux here. Many of us like our doctors and have a good relationship with them, but a public plan will force all these insurance companies to come clean and be HONEST in coverage and more importantly COST.
It is hard to FIGHT change. Even with the polling numbers, the public plan is what the public wants. It will be companies like BCBS that will fight it to the death. It is up to us, the public to make sure that they DO NOT WIN.
D.C. Senators, wake up and smell the option that the public WANTS.
Update [2009-6-23 18:33:34 by icebergslim]:
h/t to deMemedeMedia for pointing out that BCBS to raise policy holder rates 22-44% in Michigan. What is the point of having HEALTHCARE if you can not afford to go to a doctor for fear of constant policy increases!!!
And the Florida BCBS plan? Read it all here, but the crux is this:
Well the Blue Cross plan has an annual maximum of $25,000 in benefits with a lifetime maximum of $50,000. So the above Floridian will pay $5,556 a year for a possible single year benefit of $25,000.
Are you laughing or really crying, yet?
Cross-posted A Daily Kos