I think 6% of income is too high. I don’t think it should be based on income. It makes more sense to base it on age, just like younger drivers pay more for car insurance, it makes sense that older people pay a little more.
I can’t disagree more.
Premiums absolutely should be based on income and absolutely should not be based on age. I say that not just because I am in the 60+ age bracket and you likely are not. I say that because of my 25+ years in employee benefits. However, I do agree that there should be a penalty for delayed enrollment similar to what Medicare Part B imposes.
When you come right down to it, the whole health care debate boils down to two issues. How do you expand health care coverage and how do you pay for health care.
Expanding coverage is important because it spreads the risk among the sick and the healthy equally.
Make it straightforward and uncomplicated
The Senate Dems are talking about expanding Medicare. Well, expanding Medicare to people over 55. Um, expanding Medicare to some people over 55. Er, expanding Medicare to some people over 55 who can afford to pay the price.
Is this a good idea, or part of a good idea? What and Why?
What is it?
The details are sketchy at this point. The so-called expansion of Medicare is tied to discussions about killing the public option because that insurance company lackey, Senator Joe Lieberman (I, CN), could otherwise kill health care reform demanded by the majority of Americans.
And those right wing nut cases think we lefties are jamming health care reform down their throats?
We turn to the New York Times
The New York Times offered a variety of perspectives on the issue.
Seven dollars and forty cents hardly seems like an amount that should erect a barrier to health care.
In fact, when Mr. Koch (all names are fictitious) called to complain about this bill for seven dollars and forty cents, my first reaction was, “You should appreciate how lucky you are that you have a health care plan that pays most of your bills. Why are you quibbling over $7.40?”
Of course, that is not an appropriate customer service response.
But listen to Mr. Koch. “This bill is for two pain pills that were given to me when I was admitted to the hospital for an emergency surgery. Medicare won’t pay for the pills because they were “self-administered.”
Our insurance plan won’t pay, because Medicare won’t allow payment. (a common Medicare complementary policy). The hospital wants its $7.40. I must have been semi conscious when they gave me the pills, because I do not remember it at all. Why should I pay for pills that some nurse made me swallow when I was semi-conscious?”
Mr. Koch’s total pharmacy bill for this hospital stay was over $8,000 Who is the one who is quibbling over $7.40? And the issue has little to do with whether the two pills cost $7.40.
In fact, it is more likely that the hospital knows full well that the two pills only cost $0.20 But they calculate that it will take at least an additional $7.20 of bureaucratic labor to collect that $0.20. The bureaucracy needs to be fed.
Think about the effort to maintain these bureaucracies. Somewhere in the bowels of the CMS (Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services) someone has crafted regulations that stipulate that Medicare will not pay for certain medications that are self administered.
The logic is apparent Before Medicare Part D, CMS did not pay for prescriptions outside the hospital or physician office. “Self administered” appears to fairly delineate the boundary between those drugs that can only be administered in a hospital or physician office setting, from those dispensed by a pharmacist.