Today in the Wichita Eagle, Bill Roy, wrote about “”What if insurance premiums were ‘taxes’?'” He talks about the spending habits of the government and public.
He noted that the Centers of Medicare and Medicaid had estimated our nation’s overall health care costs would be $2.5 trillion. He also mentioned the government is going to pay 47% of our health care expenses. I think this isn’t really a great way to bring down the nation’s budget. However, I can see why the government would tend to lean in this direction. It would help with making sure for those who have lost their jobs and may not have the highest paying jobs to be able to afford medical care.
Mr. Roy mentioned he thought this type of spending is unsustainable and how would we be able to grasp this type of spending over all. I think he is correct in his assumption of the matter. I personally think to much of a good thing like this is going to be another downfall of our economy.
Later in this article, a professor at Kansas State University, Joe Aistrup, believes that educating people who think that more taxes to help the health care industry is what is needed. Professor Aistrup believes we need to start looking at our health care premiums as health care insurance taxes rather than premiums. This is due to the rising cost of premiums and thinking of these premiums as taxes because of those who are getting richer by the minute from the premiums we pay. That is one point this health insurance user can’t argue over. The premiums keep going up, the policies change, and we keep paying more for the premiums with coverage that many don’t use or cant afford to meet the policy requirements for various reasons.
He also believes by adding local, federal, and state taxes to the current health care premiums (taxes as he calls them), so these taxes can be compared to the national health care coverage. He thinks it would show the false notion of national health care of us paying more for this nation system for health care.
Mr. Roy stated his wife and him could understand the idea of the Professor’s thought process because they found paying for extra coverage with Blue Cross and Blue Shield for the Medigap policies to cover the differences of what Medicare Part B and D didn’t cover. My mother, aunt, and my brother’s mother and father-in-law all have said the same things about needing the extra medical coverages because of the gaps (donut holes is what they call them) that Medicare doesn’t cover. All of these people I know also have stated, the same as Mr Roy and his wife, that their premium costs, including Medicare, keep going up every year. I know our Blue Cross and Blue Shield premiums keep going up and the policies keep changing to match the premium changes.
While Mr. Roy goes on to talk about Medicaid and Medicare further in his article in today’s Wichita Eagle, he brought up an interesting question at the end. He stated, “‘Can Health Services Secretary-designate Kathleen Sebelius and President Obama do better?'”
I do have to agree with his “”We’ll see”” statement. While I am not dogging on either Governor Sebelius or President Obama, I don’t know about the rest of you, but I am tired of hearing and watching these dog and pony shows of what presidents of the past claim they are going to do with such and such with their new cabinet members.
Followup article, written by me, to Obama’s Next Agenda: Health Care
Saturday, March 7, 2009, Wichita Eagle; “What if insurance premiums were ‘taxes’?; Writer for the Wichita Eagle, Bill Roy, Opinion Page.