What is happening in North Carolina is happening all across the country. A recent Raleigh News Observer story describes how approximately 30% of the state's 300,000 subscribers to Blue Cross health insurance plans will see rates go up by up to 30%. Why?
"If you have health care, you're going to pay more," said John McDonnell, a principal with Progressive Benefit Solutions in Raleigh, which helps employers buy insurance.So, all those Dems and their backers who chortled that Obama Care would control health care costs are doing what? They're trying to change the subject. From the Politico:
Some of his clients are facing rate increases of more than 20 percent. And not just from Blue Cross, but from other big providers, including Cigna, Aetna and United Healthcare.
It's partly because of increasing medical costs and more people using expensive services, but also because the new federal health law is forcing changes such as eliminating annual or lifetime limits on coverage, expanding dependent care for children until age 26 and more, McDonnell said. "With everything that's been added, you can't really expect costs to go down," he said.
The situation isn't likely to improve any time soon. As more provisions of the health overhaul law take affect in 2014, Blue Cross officials said they expect rates to rise further.
"We do expect significant premium volatility in 2014 as the industry moves to an entirely new rating structure," said Patrick Getzen, Blue Cross' chief actuary.
The rising rates will likely force more people in North Carolina to cut back on coverage or go without, said Adam Linker, a policy analyst with the N.C. Justice Center's Health Access Coalition. And some of the additional "safety net" measures of the federal law won't start until 2014, he added.
The progressive coalition Health Care for America Now fought hard to pass health care reform. Now it’s fighting hard to help reelect lawmakers who voted for the bill — even if it means not talking about it.Let's recap. HCAN, a group bought and paid for by socialist billionaire George Soros for the purpose of promoting a federal takeover of health care is still in business, but now it is focusing on jobs and other progressive issues?
Now, HCAN’s field crews are finding that the best way to support reform-friendly lawmakers is to talk about something else: jobs, the economy or other issues likely to resonate more with voters.
The strategy switch has meant encouraging health activists to switch their focus away from promoting the health reform law they worked ardently to pass. Marc Stier, who directs HCAN partner organization Penn Action in Pennsylvania, now reaches out to a network of 25,000 heath activists to work on other issues.
“What’s different from last year is that we’re not just focused on health care,” he told POLITICO. “We’re focused on a variety of progressive issues ... the response has been really great. People want to stay engaged, and not just as health care activists.”
Fine by me... let's talk about jobs and the complete failure of Obama's socialist stimulus to create jobs. But I doubt voters will want to forget altogether the nasty health care bill which is currently forcing their health insurance premiums to go up and causing businesses to hire fewer workers as a result.