Thursday, September 16, 2010

Health Policy 101

The raison d'etre of insurance, from the policy holder's viewpoint, is the spread of unacceptable risk across a pool better able to manage it. The raison d'etre of a private insurer is to maximize profits and market share.

So, it's in the policy holder's interest to broaden the risk pool as much as possible. I'd suggest, in the context of health insurance, that the whole country would be about right. Meanwhile, it's in the companies' interest to deny or delay benefits, community rate, restrict the risk pool to those not, er, all that risky, and to plow as much money into profit, administration and salary as possible, and as little into return to policy holders as possible.

Those interests would seem, er, not entirely coincident...

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