Sounds Like a Bad Idea

President Obama has proposed a plan to force private insurance companies to pay for the medical treatments of veterans who have service-related injuries or disabilities.  Veterans organizations strongly oppose the plan.  According to the USNewswire:

 

The American Legion believes that the reimbursement plan would be inconsistent with the mandate that VA treat service-connected injuries and disabilities given that the United States government sends members of the armed forces into harm’s way, and not private insurance companies. The proposed requirement for these companies to reimburse the VA would not only be unfair, says the Legion, but would have an adverse impact on service-connected disabled veterans and their families. The Legion argues that, depending on the severity of the medical conditions involved, maximum insurance coverage limits could be reached through treatment of the veteran’s condition alone. That would leave the rest of the family without health care benefits. The Legion also points out that many health insurance companies require deductibles to be paid before any benefits are covered. Additionally, the Legion is concerned that private insurance premiums would be elevated to cover service-connected disabled veterans and their families, especially if the veterans are self-employed or employed in small businesses unable to negotiate more favorable across-the-board insurance policy pricing. The American Legion also believes that some employers, especially small businesses, would be reluctant to hire veterans with service-connected disabilities due to the negative impact their employment might have on obtaining and financing company health care benefits.” (http://news.yahoo.com/s/usnw/20090316/pl_usnw/the_american_legion_strongly_opposed_to_president_s_plan_to_charge_wounded_heroes_for_treatment)

 

The Obama administration’s proposal sounds like a bad idea.  Hopefully, the plan as described above will never become policy.  I would like to hear President Obama address the issue and the concerns raised by his opponents so that I can better understand his rationale and the implications of the proposed change in veteran’s health care.

 

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