Posted: Aug 7, 2012 at 3:00 PM [Aug 7, 2012]
In the interest of improving the cost and effectiveness of our hospitalization insurance system in the country I would suggest the following:
Repeal the complete current Affordable Health Care act (known as ObamaCare), incorporate the features that work to the advantage of the public including pre-existing conditions, maintenance health exams, immunizations, etc., into the new legislation but allow the insurers to charge what is necessary for them to remain profitable. Then provide an incentive to the public to purchase hospitalization insurance for themselves and their family members rather than penalize those that would not see the wisdom of purchasing the insurance. This could be accomplished by treating the family as an entity in a similar way as a business and permitting the deduction of the cost for the hospitalization insurance from the AGI on the front page of the income tax form. In the interest of being fair this deduction should include the amount deducted from the Social Security payments to the elderly. The people that file itemized deductions (Schedule A) could then deduct their other medical expenses with perhaps an increased exclusion percentage of their resulting AGI. Moving the cost deduction to the front page of the income tax forms would mean that all tax payers would be included even those with very low income.
If this proposition was to be adopted businesses could be relieved of the responsibility of furnishing hospitalization insurance if, of course, they would increase their workers salaries by the amount they currently pay for the hospitalization insurance. (This should be written into the law enacting this proposition.) By doing this the portability problem of hospitalization insurance would be solved and the loss of revenue, due to deduction of the insurance cost from the AGI, would be neutralized, as least partially, by increased income taxes.
Insurance companies could write policies in accord with state requirements in a tiered form with the most expensive covering all features to the least expensive covering only the bear essentials as requested by each family in an al a carte fashion similar to automobile insurance. When a family moved across state lines it would only need to change individual features as necessary to concur with the new state’s requirements. The competition would help reduce the cost and the insurers would be able to negotiate with the hospital systems within each state in order to provide the most cost effective rates.
For those that feel they can self-insure themselves or that just refuse to purchase insurance under these conditions there should be a requirement that when they come into the hospital for treatment since they would not be able to produce a proof of insurance they would be required to fill out an official government information form similar to a credit application indicating their residence and other property, net worth, means of payment, employment and banking information under the penalty of perjury for false statements. Then if they do not pay their bill after a reasonable time the hospital facility could go to a court and place a lien upon their property until the bill is paid.