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ajm3: Sounds like you worked for a great company that believed a healthy secure employee was a dependable one. A resonable concept when compared to the majority of private industry. Your employer paid the high deductables for the employee and his family members? Thats remarkable. How long do you think that company will be able to buck the current trend of the insurance companies to raise the rates without any ability to leverage a favorable negotiable result? A BCBS company in California recently increased the rates by 49 percent. That increase, according to the insurance company was justified because of "market trends" and represents the future. Hospitals that close becuase of fiscal constraints are hospitals that are managed by people that do not practice fiscal responsiblity. Most hospitals in underpopulated areas fail not because the fiscal constraints but because they cannot attract care givers to work in them. The new bill has addressed this problem by funding their education and increasing medicare reimbursements to family doctors. Here is an example of a "true market based system" that is very competitive and works: One in which health insurance companies bid to enter a pool with well establhised limits. A pool of companies willing to provide a minimum level of services that is known to all bidders. All participants are playing on the same field and enjoy the same access to the same population of consumers. All are held to the same maximum profit limits and all compete in the same market and negotiate their own reimbursement levels with their participating providers. This model exists today, has been very successful for decades and is curreently enjoyed by our Congressman, Senators, federal employees, federal retirees some state employees, public safety employees and contractors. It serves millions of clients and provides excellent service at reasonable rates and does it with very low deductables and high maximums. The Federal Health Insurance Benefits program has never had any problem finding Health insurance companies to participate and enjoys a client population that does not seek out other service providers. It is not a single payer system, it is managed by the Federal government and it is almost exactly the same system that is being offerred to small business exchanges in the new bill. It is not mandatory but almost all federal employees join it. Why? Because it provides the best coverage for the lowest cost and can be depended upon no matter what state you live in or what country you are assigned to work in or travel to as a tourist. The companies that participate are some of the strongest health insurance companies in the United States. You have ask yourself, why shouldn't all Americans be able to enjoy that kind of managed health care? That is exactly what the folks promoting reform are asking.
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