Will Bueché

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Anthem Blue Cross B.S.

Posted in Personal by Will on Monday, January 4th, 2010 ~ 10am

Remember awhile ago I mentioned a lower cost option from Anthem Blue Cross Blue Sheild?

It was $138 instead of $165 (the next closest plan I could possibly afford). Well it turns out, the $138 price is only true if you’re in perfect health. If you are like me, in perfect health but taking an anti-anxiety, the price is elevated by 25%.

I cannot imagine that there is anyone who is in absolutely perfect health, so in effect, the $138 price does not exist.

End result was that the lower cost plan cost about $173, or about ten dollars more than the other plan I was considering. But the other plan does not let you see a doctor (I mean, it does not pay for doctor visits), whereas this plan does (it pays for 3 doctor visits).

So I went with this one despite some chagrin that they state a price which no one (I imagine) actually receives.

I’d like to see the numbers of course. Maybe there is someone, somewhere, who receives the $138 price. I doubt it.

By the way, a natural response to finding one has been misled is to consider dropping to an even higher premium which might cost about $20 less. (A higher premium means you’d lose, say, $10,000 if you were in an accident instead of losing $5,000). I could try that, if I felt sure that I’d never need emergency care. But I have a sneaking suspicion that if I did, they’d respond by saying that the price for that is not 25% higher than stated, but more like 35% higher than stated. They have thought this scam through and through.

This is why we need public health insurance, self-sufficient but not-for-profit, rather than private for-profit companies. Bear in mind that in most civilized countries, the idea of a for-profit health insurance company is dismissed as being inherently contrary to the needs of the public. In the U.S., you fend for yourself as for-profit companies determine how best to take in the most money while giving out the least. And it is contrary to the needs of the public, and someday, it may be stopped.

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