Canary in the Healthcare Coal Mine



August 6, 2014
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Don’t miss what’s happening with vaccinations. Remember when health plans promised to maintain an enrollee’s health through prepaid coverage that included the full range of preventive care?

Because of health plans, doctors are no longer vaccinating. As reported by the Arizona Republic, “It is becoming more of a hassle each year for parents to get their children vaccinated for school, as complications with insurance reimbursements are driving pediatricians to quit providing the services.” In short, insurers are paying poorly or so late that doctors can’t afford to vaccinate their insured patients. Some say complexity due to government policies has caused the problem.

Many physicians are telling parents to go to county (government) clinics to get vaccinated. For example, in Maricopa County, 10 percent of the children vaccinated last year by the county had private insurance. That’s up from 3.5 percent in 2009.

Health plans are short-changing government clinics too. From October 2012 to January 2013, Maricopa County spent $202,849.43 to administer vaccines to privately insured children. But as of March 2013, health plans had reimbursed the county ony $102,457.66. This loss of nearly $100,400 is sustained by taxpayers.

That’s a triple loss for the insured. First, they don’t get access to the health care dollars promised to them for care. Second, they pay for promised care with their own tax dollars. And third, they’re forced out of their private clinic.

What do health plans do with these dollars? They earn interest on them. The delay is a type of “float.” The longer the float, the more money health plans make. One doctor says insurance companies take six to 12 months to reimburse him for certain vaccinations.

The promise of preventive care is a ruse. Health plans charge high premiums for care they’re not actually planning to pay for. And families who paid for private insurance are told to go to the county clinics where the uninsured go. 

I sense a frog slowly cooking. Health plans are conditioning clinics not to expect payment. Complex government policies are conditioning doctors to send their private patients to public clinics. And individuals are being conditioned to accept rationing of care they already paid for. In short, this vaccination story shows how private medicine is being subsumed by government health care with the help of managed care corporations.

Some predict that there will soon be only five to seven health plans for the entire country. Obamacare advances this prediction with its emphasis on managed care and its prohibition on traditional insurance.

But does Congress see the trap? Once government is dependent on this cabal of corporations to run the system, health plans will have the power to name their price – and extract billions from taxpayers.

There’s danger in the healthcare coal mine, but this collusive public-private partnership can be stopped. Donate $35, $50 or $100 today to support our efforts to awaken and engage the American people while there is time to protect your health freedom and the private practice of medicine.

Working every day for freedom,

Twila Brase

President and Co-founder