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Fix it!

Why do you assume that everyone supporting reform expects someone else to pay? Clearly you don't understand how the current system functions. Let me explain. Estimates are that it costs between $550 - $750/mo. to pay for health insurance. Many employers subsidize 75% (or more) of the cost and the employee pays the balance, or about $150 - $190/mo. If you quit your job, you can keep COBRA coverage for 102% of the cost to your former employer, or $$560 - $765/mo. Those are GROUP rates. If you then have to buy an individual policy, the rates are SIGNIFICANTLY higher to begin with since you don't have the bargaining power of a large group. After you submit an application, you will be charged a rate which is 1 to 7 times the published rate, depending on your history and POSSIBLE future health expenses. Whereas employers can demand that pre-existing conditions be covered, you have no such bargaining power. EVERY DOCTOR VISIT prior to submitting that application is now a pre-existing condition and you will be charged for it, as well as what COULD happen in the future. It doesn't matter how long you've been insured previously. There is no portability of insuranace. Also, if you get sick, the insurer will find a way to cancel your policy (recission). Again, this doesn't usually happen with larger GROUP policies. The current bills put an end to recission and pre-existing conditions, and eliminate pricing based on factors other than age. These protections need to be implemented now. Many workers are losing their jobs. Once COBRA runs out, many will find they can't get insurance. (In NC all but 1 company can, and will, deny coverage. After all, they didn't get your prior premiums...why should they pay now?) US companies have a burden of health insurance that foreign companies do not. To be competitive internationally, the US must eliminate employer paid health insurance. If not, jobs will continue to be offshored or US companies will eventually discontinue health benefits. Reform is needed now and is supported by the US Chamber of Commerce.

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