New Study Shows Why Major Insurers Hate The ACA – It Actually Forces Them To Help Sick People

Major insurers everywhere have dumped massive cash into lobbying against the ACA. Their corporate-owned Republicans have insisted it would destroy America in any number of strange and unusual ways. Now a new study reveals why they say helping sick people afford to see a doctor is bad for the country.

Data has become available for 2014 and 2015 enrollees to Blue Cross and Blue Shield, who were picked up through the Affordable Care Act’s health insurance exchanges. It shows that the people who the ACA was specifically created to help are actually going to the doctor and using medical services. Huge shock, right? The entirety of the Republican and corporate establishment’s opposition to the ACA resides in a single thing — money. More for them, and none for regular people. If the poor and middle class suffer and die needlessly, that’s just their cost of doing business.

People who got back into the insurance market, thanks to the ACA, were shown to have a 22 percent higher medical cost than those with employer-based coverage in 2015. The average monthly spending numbers for the new enrollees was $559 in 2015 compared to $457 for group members who had it through an employer. The same new enrollee segment increased from $501 in 2014 to the previously mentioned $559 in 2015.

The irony of the situation is that the very corporations who are whining about having to pay the bills of sick people were the primary engineers of their own self-imposed disaster. These are the same corporations that spiked health insurance costs, causing people to be unable to afford it. They are also the same corporations that outright refused to sell people coverage, because of “pre-existing conditions.” Pre-existing conditions that could be literally anything they wanted them to be. After sometimes decades of unmanaged health issues, these new enrollees are consuming services at elevated rates. Insurers basically screwed themselves for short-term profits, and now they have to pay some of it back. Pardon me if I am less than sympathetic towards them.

This shows just how desperately needed the ACA is, and how incredibly dishonest health insurers are about their business model. The fact insurance payouts rose as much as they did in as short a time is proof just how many Americans were suffering without need. That is where the darker truth of the health insurance industry comes into plain view. These companies are still wildly profitable. They just want to keep more money for themselves. Simply put, they’ve become a caricature of their own greedy reputations.

The tragedy of this all is that the same data showing how desperately needed the ACA is, also is being used as misinformation to completely lie to America about how bad it is for the country. The only tidbit being presented is that it is increasing costs to insurance companies, which does mean their premiums might go up. However, the overall increase in premiums is at a slower rate than before Obamacare became law, even with the increased payouts for more consumption of services.

Right wingers and unscrupulous insurance companies are taking the very truth about why it is a good law, and perverting it into a lie about how it is bad by purposefully omitting all context until the “truth” is whatever they want it to be. If you add in the fact that initial expenditures are going to be higher until we catch up with decades of a lack of care, you can argue a case that premiums would have actually dropped if all other things were equal, due to massive amounts of new customers spreading out the cost burden.

As more new data becomes available, and initial over-consumption tapers off, the last arguments to be made against the law will ultimately boil down to profit over people. If anything will prove how obsolete the American health insurance industry is, and why single-payer is needed, that will be it.


Featured image via Joe Raedle / Getty