Health Care Reform-YES WE CAN-and why we have to

Very interesting article on the current health care crisis and one that every American should read.  If the pretty graph that compares your wage increase (or lack thereof) to health insurance premiums increase, read on and figure out if you can come up with a better solution.  I’m one of the lucky few unemployed people who, thanks to the stimulus plan, can still afford her COBRA payments.  If I don’t have a job in 9 months (which is when Uncle Sam stops helping me out with my COBRA payments) I don’t know what I’m going to do for health care.  I’ll be even more broken then than I am now which is going to make private insurance pretty unrealistic…and I’m not going to be alone.  But at least I’m single and don’t have a family that relies on my health insurance too…and at least I’m fairly young and in good health (knock on wood).  But the cold hard facts are that the unemployment rate is climbing to 10% pretty quickly and the health care crisis is just going to get worse if we don’t do something about it soon.  As more people lose their jobs, I betting there are going to be a lot more sugarbabies on that site looking for sugardaddies and this time it’s going to be to pay their health insurance premium instead of college loans or fancy handbags.  There’s something about that sort of desperation that makes it hard to even joke about that site now.  Private health insurance companies aren’t going to lobby Congress or the White House to adopt a plan as radical as this one, so it’s up to the public.  Just something to chew on.  I also have to add that Health Law was one of the scariest classes I took in law school and this article seems to be over simplifying…a bit…but maybe I was over-thinking?  It would be unlike me…but perhaps.

Why consensus health care reform won’t work. – By Timothy Noah – Slate Magazine.

And here’s a Slate editorial response to the above article.  I think the title says it all and I’m too sleepy to ‘splain it to you.

Tim Noah Is Kidding Himself About Health Care Costs

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COBRA-YES WE CAN!

DSC03097, originally uploaded by ecallanet.

I have already posted about this but it’s SUCH an important part of the Stimulus plan that people need to be paying attention to NOW. If you’ve been laid off since September 1, 2008, you should read this article on the COBRA section of the new Stimulus plan. Until now, COBRA has been so expensive it’s almost not an option for the recently unemployed. Thanks to the new President’s Stimulus Plan, COBRA is finally affordable. Under the new plan, your employer has to cover 65% of your COBRA costs (the employer is then reimbursed by the US Treasury-but that’s not your concern!). As I’ve said before, I think this is a HUGE step in the right direction. To see Suze Orman’s take on it, skip down to my first posting.

COBRA Stimulus Plan – How the COBRA Premium Subsidy will Help More Get COBRA Benefits

The Suze Scoop from Suze Orman

HOLLLLLLLLL-AR!!! Change YES WE CAN! Barack Obama just did an amazing thing…he’s keeping me single! Let me back up…my boyfriend and I had already casually talked about not being totally opposed to the idea of getting hitched…then I got laid off and I was all…so how ‘bout we get ourselves civil unionized tomorrow? With fake plastic flowers? At the courthouse? I’ll buy you White Castle after? And you can get me on your insurance plan so I can get an epidural for my herniated disc in two weeks! YAY! Romantic, right? Who wouldn’t say yes to a proposal like that?!? Having been recently ‘emancipated’ from my job…I can’t really afford to buy him a ring…or a flat screen TV…which is what I’d imagine the male equivalent of a ring is…But I figure we could buy one in less than two months with all the money we’d save NOT paying for my COBRA plan…yeah…COBRA…incase you didn’t know…is INSANELY expensive…to the tune of near $500 a month in my particular case…

SO, back to the bit that can help you out if you get laid off…and why I am so darned pleased with Mr. President…the NEW Stimulus plan reduces COBRA payments for people who were ‘involuntarily’ removed from their jobs by 65%!!!! It makes COBRA affordable! Reachable! DOABLE! Personally I think this is brilliant because the next looming national crisis is going to be healthcare…First people get laid off, now they don’t have homes either, so the next thing to go…the next major expense that families can’t afford is ALWAYS health insurance. And when that happens, the uninsured become a burden on the rest of the healthcare system. Hospitals and doctors can’t deny people service…but people have empty pockets-you can’t garnish wages and you can’t put a lien against a home when they don’t have a home or any assets at all! So I think this is an absolutely brilliant plan…this will make it feasible and possible for families and individuals to continue health insurance and that is a step in the right direction-for everyone! So cheers to Barack and cheers to ME not having to race down the aisle for some sort of weird nouveau shotgun Brooklyn-style wedding.

The Suze Scoop