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Friday, December 11, 2009

Small Biz Health Care Daily: Health Care Economics, Part II

As noted in yesterday’s “Small Biz Health Care Daily” post, what’s missing from the current health care policy debate raging in Congress is sound economics.

In addition to the previously noted essay titled “Health Care” by Michael A. Morrisey,
The Concise Encyclopedia of Economics offers another important essay that policymakers, business owners and concerned citizens need to grasp. In his entry titled “Health Insurance,” John Goodman provides the background and basics on how health insurance should and does functions.

Goodman highlights several problems with health insurance today. That includes the following:

“A third source of the problem is state government regulations, including laws that mandate what is covered under health insurance plans. Under these laws, insurers are required to cover services ranging from acupuncture to in vitro fertilization, and providers ranging from chiropractors to naturopaths. Coverage for heart transplants is mandated in Georgia, and for liver transplants in Illinois. Mandates cover marriage counseling in California, pastoral counseling in Vermont, and sperm bank deposits in Massachusetts. Studies estimate that as many as one in four uninsured people have been priced out of the market by such regulations.”

Raymond J. Keating
Chief Economist
Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council

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