For several weeks the insurance industry lobby has been releasing alarmist reports about draconian health care premium increases that could result from health reform. Despite being roundly and thoroughly debunked, the insurance lobby continues to release these studies and push their bogus conclusion about cost increases.
Wonder why? Because insurance companies can profit from blocking down reform. A newly identified report from Goldman Sachs looked at the impact of health reform on major health insurance companies and put it in stark terms – insurance company earnings could be cut by 50% over the next decade if the Senate Finance Committee version of health reform passes. The best thing for insurance companies? Maintain the status quo of skyrocketing premiums, soaring profits and a health system that threatens our economy. But according to the Goldman Sachs analysis, insurance companies will also profit if the bills in the House and Senate are watered down and stripped of the key provisions designed to protect consumers and help drive down long-term costs.
It may be good for insurance company profits to push alarmist conclusions in an attempt to water down reform, but these provisions are vital to achieving the President’s commitment to bringing down long-term health care costs:
Nancy-Ann DeParle is the Director of the Office of Health Reform