“If we continue in the direction we’re headed we’ll soon have a health insurance system dominated by two or three mammoth for-profit corporations capable of squeezing employees and consumers for all they’re worth – and handing over the profits to their shareholders and executives.
The alternative is a government-run single payer system – such as is in place in almost every other advanced economy – dedicated to lower premiums and better care.”- Robert Reich.
“Insurers are seeking rate hikes of 20 to 40 percent for next year because they think they already have enough economic and political clout to get them.
That’s not what they’re telling federal and state regulators, of course. They say rate increases are necessary because people enrolling in Obamacare are sicker than they expected, and they’re losing money.
Remember, this an industry with rising share values and wads of cash for mergers and acquisitions. It also has enough dough to bestow huge pay packages on its top executives.
The CEOs of the five largest for-profit health insurance companies each raked in $10 to $15 million last year.
After the mergers, the biggest insurers will have even larger profits, higher share values, and fatter pay packages for their top brass.
There’s abundant evidence that when health insurers merge, premiums rise. For example, Leemore Dafny, a professor at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, and his two co-authors, found that after Aetna merged with Prudential HealthCare in 1999, premiums rose 7 percent higher than had the merger not occurred.” – Robert Reich. ===================================================
In India, the problems would be worse, when private players are allowed to play a role in providing social security. The profit would not be shared with shareholders too. It would be shared with the politicians, as black money.
That is the reason the Indian politicians find it irresistible to yield to the desires of the ultra-rich and make the common public the fodder to feed those ultra rich.
We know this happening already in the Telecommunications sector. The BSNL and MTNL had the wherewithal to provide cable TV connection to all homes and provide all the channels the people wanted. But, they were not encouraged. Will these public sector organisations pay anything to the politicians overtly and covertly? What is the use of these organisations for them? But, the private players in the field rake in a lot and throw a share to the politicians in the name of party-funds, who do not want to make the source of their party funds transparent but share the booty among themselves for which they became politicians first and rulers next. One can compare the remuneration of the chief of Airtel with the chief of BSNL and find who is there for what.
Likewise one can compare the remuneration of the lowest paid clerical staff of the BSNL with his counterpart in Airtel and find who is better off. The modern CEO would ensure that wages fall and profits rise. He would ensure his voice is heard and obeyed while the voice of the employees would never be allowed even to be raised.
Privatisation helps the top man to suck the blood of the public and the subordinates to enrich himself.
These politicians who are after money-bags would not save the nation by privatising Social Security. Their thoughtless action is going to make the life of the future generations miserable.
Mr. Arun Jaitley has said in Para 62 of his Budget speech,”With respect to ESI, the employee should have the option of choosing either ESI or a Health Insurance product, recognized by the Insurance Regulatory Development Authority (IRDA). We intend to bring amending legislation in this regard, afterstakeholder consultation.”. What this forebodes the nation can be seen from the problems faced by the commoners in the USA. The situation in India would become worse.
Let us,therefore, knock at the doors of Judiciary to save the nation from the hands of these greedy politicians, who had already corroded the public sector health care system by their interference and cite the same corrosion as the reason to bring in private players to spoil the nation.
As rightly analysed by Mr.Reich in some other article, modern day businessmen are not required to be brilliant. He says that the modern day corporate CEO is one “who’s rigged the rules, reaped giant personal rewards, and left communities and employees stranded.” But, the men in power to control the government and the media make the government to propagate and convince the masses that the modern day businessman is a messiah to save the mankind.
Only the awakening of the masses can save their progeny!