Did you hear about the Wellpoint Mugging? The Wall Street Journal reported today about the very controversal Wellpoint rate hike in CA. It appears that everyone is jumping on the evil health insurance band wagon. We have discussed that even if health status and health cost per person in america was stable that the current recession will drive up healthcare costs. As employees loss their jobs, they and their family do some quick math.
The Wellpoint Mugging by WSJ 1 18 10
What are my monthly known medical expenses and what is the current cost of COBRA. Families that have high health care cost in relation to the premiums they will be charged for COBRA keep their insurance where as those that have low or no real healthcare cost ( ie the healthy population) chose to take the risk of a major medical event while uninsured. This has a double impact on health insurers, decreased revenue due to lost members( layed off employees) and increased expense ( health insurance companies biggest expense is their members health care cost). In response to this I suspect we will see large increases in health insurance premiums over the next few years. The WSJ went on to say that the recently proposed health insurance reform will led to very similar rate hikes. Any type of healthcare reform has to take very seriously the unintended consequences.