As I never tire of saying, Lloyd’s of London wasn’t in the business to insure ships that were going to sink because of obvious problems: a hold in the bottom? No policy.
People are not boats, and we need to find ways to help them stay afloat. However, berating insurance companies for failure to cover what we call “pre-existing conditions” shows that we don’t understand the concept of insurance. An excellent piece on Tech Central explains better than I can:
“President Obama owned the New World Order Health Insurance Company, he would not be willing to insure an applicant with brain cancer nor would he be willing to pay an unlimited lifetime benefit to all insureds— not without a premium that reflects the risks to his personal bank account.
“Theoretically, insurance companies collect enough in premiums to operate profitably while paying all the claims they have agreed to pay under contracts with the individuals and groups that they insure. If we add more risk, the insurance company has no choice but to increase premiums.
“The persons who own the insurance companies (you and me, pal) expect them to operate profitably. The companies employ thousands of actuaries, healthcare industry expense analysts, claims adjusters, fraud inspectors, service personnel, underwriters, risk assessors, etc. to assure that this happens.
“Insurance companies protect us by standing ready to pay ‘covered’ expenses over and above whatever deductions, exclusions, and limitations are agreed upon in advance. There is a viable legal contract between the parties— financial disasters are avoided if we get really sick.”
We need to be honest and address the question of the uninsured who have a catastrophic disease without vilifying health insurance companies. Some advocates of “reform” do this to stir up people; if they were more honest, they would tell the truth about how the companies operate and go from there in looking for solutions. For many of us–myself included–we take care of the problem ourselves, by making a deal with health insurance companies.
I understand that there are poor Americans who can’t do this, and improvident American who won’t do this.
But the solution isn’t to berate the insurance companies for behaving like insurers.