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Laughter: The best medicine (an Open Thread)

Well, I’ve cleaned up after my bleeding ears and was ready for a laugh. Where better to go than the New York Times?

Health Insurers Ease Stance on Pre-Existing Conditions

WASHINGTON —The health insurance industry said Tuesday that it was willing to end the practice of charging higher premiums to sick people if Congress adopted a comprehensive plan that provided coverage to all Americans.

The industry’s flexible position on the issue came as a surprise to lawmakers, and could make it easier to reach an agreement in Congress because it narrows the issues on which insurers are ready to fight the Democrats who control Congress and the White House.

Insurers said they were still staunchly opposed to creation of a new government-run health insurance plan, which, under many Democratic proposals, would compete directly with private insurers.

In effect, insurers said they were willing to discard an element of their longstanding business model, under which insurance policies are priced, in part, on the basis of a person’s medical condition or history.
. . .
Insurers said that they could accept more aggressive regulation of not just their premiums but also their benefits, underwriting practices and other activities. Such strict regulation, they said, would make a new public program unnecessary.
. . .
In November, two weeks after the presidential election, the industry said it could support legislation requiring insurers to accept all applicants, regardless of illness or disability. In return, the industry said, Congress should require all Americans to have coverage.
. . .
However, the two executives said that insurers wanted to retain the right to charge different premiums based on the age, place of residence and family size of subscribers.

Do they think we’re idiots?

  1. They are generously going to stop refusing customers (or charging more) for pre-existing conditions
  2. Congress will require that WE ALL must purchase insurance
  3. They still might charge more depending on how old we are, where we live or how many people we have in our family

And THAT proves we don’t need a public option for health care. . . . .

(Rolling on the floor laughing hysterically)

Feel better now?