The Obama administration has unveiled a new plan and put it online at whitehouse.gov.
Ya know the White House needs to reduce their wordiness, especially when it doesn't say much.
One good thing is a rate review of insurance premiums.
One essential policy is “rate review” meaning that health insurers must submit their proposed premium increases to the State authority or Secretary for review. The President’s Proposal strengthens this policy by ensuring that, if a rate increase is unreasonable and unjustified, health insurers must lower premiums, provide rebates, or take other actions to make premiums affordable. A new Health Insurance Rate Authority will be created to provide needed oversight at the Federal level and help States determine how rate review will be enforced and monitor insurance market behavior.
See outrage du jour for the gouging of individual policy holders.
It has a penalty tax for those who do not buy health insurance, and the hardship exemption from the tax is absurdly low, $18,500 yearly income for a couple.
A massive payroll tax for business with more than 50 employees if they do not provide health insurance.
Angry Bear wrote up a first pass in looking it over.
As far as I can see the Snowe plan worst tax ever free rider provision to prevent employment of people who need jobs provision is included.
There is a tax increase on those making over $200,000 a year.
Why these things are not adjusted for inflation in the onset, I have no idea.
CBS Market Watch wrote up a good summary:
Would also assess a new tax on unearned income to pay for Medicare and boost subsidies for working-class families.
Huffington Post also has an overview.
The bill's costs are now $950 billion dollars.
From what I can see, government is still not tackling at all the elephant in the room. The entire system is bloated with needless and wasteful costs. Just yesterday we saw yet another drug, this time for Diabetes, cause heart failure. Over and over we have super expensive drugs come out on the market which have negligible improvements over past drugs and a list of side effects, many dangerous, as long as your arm. Just one outrageous, costly aspect of a health care system littered with them.
Considering this post an open thread and leave your observations on health care in a comment.