Wednesday, April 04, 2007

DarthDoyle Raises Cost of Health Insurance

Rep. Lasee asks the question; we'll provide the answer.

The Governor’s proposed cigarette tax (a tax many working poor will pay) is supposed to provide new money for Medicaid expenses, among other things. A closer look at the budget shows that the Governor is taking $800 million out of the Medicaid budget and partially replacing it with cigarette tax money. So, Medicaid in Wisconsin will continue to be underfunded while the Democrats get a new pool of money to spend on other things.

...We already know what happens when the state underfunds Medicaid payments to health care providers. The majority of people in this state with private health insurance and those who self-pay pick up the slack. Higher health insurance premiums for paying customers helps offset the amount the provider loses on each underpaying (Medicaid) customer. This is the hidden health care tax.


Simple. DarthDoyle wants to institute DarthCare. The fact that DarthCare is likely to cost about 150% of current health-care insurances is a problem. ($13K private vs. $18K DarthCare, current estimates.)

But it's LESS a problem if the cost of health insurance rises--or if it can be forced to equal the (putative) cost of DarthCare.

So by draining Medicaid funds and forcing healthcare providers to bill the differences to privately insured individuals, he forces private insurers to raise their premiums.

In and of itself, this move will not equalize the costs. But every little bit helps!

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