Friday, December 18, 2009
Making A Case For Health Reform
The U.S. Health and Human Services department has issued a new report which argues that health insurance reform will both lower costs and increase choices.
“Health insurance reform isn’t about politics, it’s about families," said HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.
"Every day, millions of families across the country wonder how they will pay their skyrocketing medical bills or what they will do if their children get sick. Those families are our priority and we are fighting to give them the affordable, secure, stable coverage they need.”
The report argues that, under the health care status quo, the average premium for a family plan purchased through an employer is $13,375, more than double the premium in 2000 and premiums have grown more than three times faster than wages. The number of people in working families who spend more than 10 percent of their income on health care has more than tripled. Additionally, a recent survey estimated that 72 million non-elderly adults have accumulated medical debt or had difficulty paying medical bills in the past year - and 61 percent of them had insurance.
Health insurance reform will ensure that every American can find affordable health care coverage, control costs for families and provide Americans with unprecedented stability and security. Reform will also help strengthen the American economy and put more money in the pockets of American families. Lowering health care costs by 1 percent will create 320,000 jobs nationwide and raise median family income by $6,800 by 2030, the report says. Reform will also drive down premiums for families and limit out-of-pocket costs that eat into the family budget, it argues.