Got cancer? Got #Obamacare? Good luck…

March 19, 2014
"Obamacare has arrived"

“Obamacare has arrived”

Among the many “benefits” brought to us by the Affordable Care Act has been the narrowing of provider networks. To deal with increased costs brought on by Obamacare’s increased coverage mandates, insurance companies are offering fewer doctors and hospitals on their approved lists. For many people, this has meant losing access to the physicians they liked, contra President Obama’s oft-repeated promise lie.

If you’re a cancer patient, you have a particular problem. We’ve met Edie Sundby, a stage-4 cancer sufferer who’s losing her provider network, thanks to Obamacare, but what if you were able to keep your doctors, but needed specialized or experimental treatment?

Under Obamacare, good luck:

Some of America’s best cancer hospitals are off-limits to many of the people now signing up for coverage under the nation’s new health care program.

Doctors and administrators say they’re concerned. So are some state insurance regulators.

An Associated Press survey found examples coast to coast. Seattle Cancer Care Alliance is excluded by five out of eight insurers in Washington’s insurance exchange. MD Anderson Cancer Center says it’s in less than half of the plans in the Houston area. Memorial Sloan-Kettering is included by two of nine insurers in New York City and has out-of-network agreements with two more.

In all, only four of 19 nationally recognized comprehensive cancer centers that responded to AP’s survey said patients have access through all the insurance companies in their states’ exchanges.

Not too long ago insurance companies would have been vying to offer access to renowned cancer centers, said Dan Mendelson, CEO of the market research firm Avalere Health. Now the focus is on costs.

This is a marked deterioration of access to the premier cancer centers for people who are signing up for these plans,” Mendelson said.

Those patients may not be able get the most advanced treatment, including clinical trials of new medications.

Emphasis added.

The article mentions another problem, one that’s been noted since the Obamacare web sites went online: it’s hard to tell if the physician and hospital you want are included in the plan you’re looking at. Thus someone in Los Angeles  may sign up thinking they have access to a top-notch cancer facility, such as Cedars-Sinai, only to discover the truth after they develop cancer. Their only options then are to go elsewhere (if there is an “elsewhere”) or pay out of pocket, which may be financially devastating or downright impossible.

Later on, the writer quotes officials who feel these are not serious problems, that they can be worked out, but what about the people who need treatment now and used to be able to get it under the old system? Though the large insurance companies were nothing better than rent-seeking collaborators in Obamacare, I’m not blaming them for this; they’re just acting rationally in the face of increased costs, a problem created by government.

At the end, the writers report that the Obama administration has promised “closer scrutiny” of insurance companies, especially for cancer care, presumably to include the design of provider networks. Great. So the solution to a problem created by regulation will inevitably be more regulation, which will make the problem worse and a genuine solution more difficult, not easier. Here’s the process:

  1. Government creates a problem through bad regulation.
  2. Businesses respond logically to the problem, irking consumers.
  3. Consumers complain about the response.
  4. Government proposes more bad regulation to deal with the response, ignoring the core problem government itself created and creating new ones.

Rinse and repeat.

Meanwhile, the poor cancer sufferer keeps on suffering.

Thanks, Obamacare!

via Dana Loesch

RELATED: In the Elections Have Consequences category, Colorado Mountain College is cutting back on hours for part-time faculty to avoid the expensive new employer mandates under Obamacare. I wonder how many voted for Obama? Whoever you are, congratulations. You got what you voted for. (h/t Conservative Intelligence Briefing)

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)

Advertisements

Irony, thy name is “ObamaCare”

September 21, 2010

When the (Social) Democrats were shoving ObamaCare down our throats, one of the trumps they played was the Absolute Moral Authority Card: do it for the children!

Now that ObamaCare has passed, insurance companies have to deal with the new costs imposed by the legislation. Since the government threatens to break their legs if they raise prices, there’s only one rational response: cut services.

And thus it is that insurance companies are eliminating children-only plans.

Heckuva job, Progressives.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


The Thugocracy in action, health-care division – UPDATED!

September 10, 2010

So, the whole point of ObamaCare (well, one of the points) is to put private insurance companies out of business and pave the way for single-payer national health care:

And yet, when those same targeted private insurance companies complain about ObamaCare and raise rates to meet the new costs it imposes, the President’s Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius, gets annoyed and tells them to shut up and take it, or they’ll be put out of business even sooner:

President Barack Obama’s top health official on Thursday warned the insurance industry that the administration won’t tolerate blaming premium hikes on the new health overhaul law.

“There will be zero tolerance for this type of misinformation and unjustified rate increases,” Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said in a letter to the insurance lobby.

“Simply stated, we will not stand idly by as insurers blame their premium hikes and increased profits on the requirement that they provide consumers with basic protections,” Sebelius said. She warned that bad actors may be excluded from new health insurance markets that will open in 2014 under the law. They’d lose out on a big pool of customers, as many as 30 million people nationwide.

In other words, company executives who dare exercise their First Amendment rights to speak the truth about the harm ObamaCare will do to their firms will… get hurt.

For some strange reason, I’m picturing Frank Nitti, backed by a couple of his goons, in an insurance CEO’s office looking around and saying “Nice company youse got here. Be a shame if something happened to it.”

Must be a coincidence on my part.

LINKS: Ed Morrissey see this as evidence that the entire administration is peevish, not just the President.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)

UPDATE: Irony alert – The GAO says Secretary Sebelius herself is misleading Medicare recipients:

The Government Accountability Office says a Medicare mailer sent out by Kathleen Sebelius, secretary of Health and Human Services, to Medicare recipients on the new health-care law isn’t accurate.

In fact, according to the GAO, the brochure, which cost $18 million in taxpayer dollars to publish and emanated from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, presented a view of the health reform law that is “not universally shared,” that it “overstated the benefits” of health reform,” and that it failed to note the possibility of less generous Medicare benefits and higher costs.

While the GAO cleared the administration of putting together a purely partisan or propagandizing brochure, it was nonetheless critical of its content.

Will this mean she has to put herself out of business?  Confused

(via Gabriel Malor on Twitter)


Christmas for the insurance companies

December 27, 2009

Nate Beeler on the corporatist deal cut on the Senate version of health care reform:

I’d have put Harry Reid in Obama’s place, but the point is well-taken: Big Business sells out to support Big Government’s policies in return for guaranteed profits, in this case the individual mandate that requires persons to buy a private insurance policy whether they want it or not. They’re not owned by the government, but they are an arm of it, nonetheless.  It’s the fascist bargain.

And, no, I’m not calling Obama or Reid jackbooted fascists. But the progressive policies they’re pursuing are part of an ideological continuum on the Left that runs from a relatively mild Progressivism through Fascist and Communist totalitarianism, all of which subordinates the individual to the State and assumes that the State is the arbiter of the public good. Theirs is a fascism with a smile and a warm hug, not goosesteps and truncheons. In short, it’s a liberal fascism.

You can follow Nate Beeler’s cartoons at The Washington Examiner.


The Democratic suicide mission

December 20, 2009

Bill Kristol on the Democrats’ likely passage of a highly unpopular health care reform bill:

via Jim Hoft


Tuesday links fiesta!

October 27, 2009

Today’s a busy day, but I wanted to leave you some links to chew over. Just remember to chew thoroughly before swallowing…  Clown

The Jihadi War

Our enemies assert the absolute moral and spiritual superiority of Islam over the decadent Christianity, Judaism, and the West itself. But did you know that Islam has a 1,300 years-long history of taking and trading in slaves? Jihad Watch has posted a series of videos detailing the Arab Islamic trade in African slaves. (Here are links to part two, part three, part four, and part five.) I don’t know the background of the author or authors, but the videos are interesting. By the way, slavery continues to the present day in Islamic lands.

Here in Los Angeles, an Iranian Muslim woman who converted to Christianity has won her request for asylum, but doesn’t know it because she is on the run from Muslims who would kill her for the crime of leaving Islam – apostasy.

The brave, brave jihadis of al Qaeda have struck again, this time murdering over 160 Iraqis in their quest to restore the Caliphate and return the world to the seventh century.

More information on the officially unexplained FBI raid on a Muslim slaughterhouse in Illinois. Just why did the Bureau need over 100 armed agents, plus snipers and helicopters?

Finally, Ed Morrissey awards the Captain Louis Renault “Shocked, shocked!” award to Western leaders surprised to realize that Iran has been playing them for suckers.

Global Warming

I’ve mentioned several times before the interesting theory of Henrik Svensmark, the Danish scientist who argues that clouds are a regulator of the Earth’s temperature and that cloud formation -and thus the heating and cooling of the planet- is governed in large part by the ability of cosmic rays to reach the Earth. Now Svensmark has published a paper (PDF) that he claims validates his thesis. (via Heliogenic Climate Change)

A warming climate may actually stimulate the growth of the Pacific rain forests.

More Svensmark: the growth of trees may be linked to cosmic rays.

The humble midge provides more evidence of the Medieval Warm Period, when the world was likely warmer than it is now, all without those nasssty greenhouse gases.

Government policies meant to respond to a crisis that doesn’t exist may drive one-in-four Britons into poverty.

Meteorologist Roy Spencer argues that the Anthropogenic Global Warming theory has all the characteristics of urban legend.

Finally, do you really want to save the planet? Then stop eating meat, you selfish carnivore. Just don’t ask the prime proponent to do the same…. (For the record, they’ll take my steak the day they pry it from my cold dead hands.)

Politics

Maybe she’s learning from President Obama? Argentina’s President Kirchner has launched her own war against a free press.

William Jacobson sounds the alarm about the most monumental power-grab you’ve never heard about.  At the risk of repeating myself, there’s a certain book you should read.

Sarah Palin reviews the East Coast political races and reminds us why they’re important. And you might want to have a look at her forthcoming book.

Sister Toldjah rubs her eyes in disbelief as the Associated Press fact-checks the progressives’ smear of the insurance companies.

Power Line looks at the debate over nuclear power and decries reactionary American liberalism.

And, to end it all, California’s Democratic treasurer calls out the Democrat-dominated state legislature for being too far in the pockets of the unions to govern the state effectively. As Ed writes, if the state GOP doesn’t have this clip in a commercial soon, they’re more incompetent than ever suspected.

That’s it for today! Be good, and I’ll see you tomorrow.  Big Grin