Water Cooler 6/6/17 Open Thread Obmacare Domino Falling; Swedes Abandon Healthcare; CA to Decriminalize Murder By Disease


Looks Like Nebraska Is Set To Lose Both Remaining Insurers From Their Obamacare Exchanges

Give it a little time and Obamacare may just die on it’s own.

Health insurer Blue Cross Blue Shield announced Thursday that it would not be participating in the individual market in Nebraska next year, and the remaining insurer hasn’t decided if it will leave also.


Blue Cross Blue Shield is projected to lose $12 million this year from offering plans in the state, and the company would need to increase its price for premiums next year by 50 percent. The company previously participated in the Obamacare exchanges, which resulted in $150 million in losses.

Democrats and the law’s defenders have pointed to such moves as evidence of Republican sabotage of Obamacare, while Republicans point to results as evidence that the law isn’t working. Nebraska’s Republican governor, Pete Ricketts, said the decision from Blue Cross “demonstrates the failure of Obamacare and how the system was so poorly designed that great companies like Blue Cross Blue Shield can’t stay in the marketplace. It highlights that Congress needs to act to make the health care system sustainable.”

—Washington Examiner

Medica which would be Nebraska’s remaining insurer looks like it will not be participating either.

Medica Health hasn’t decided whether to offer plans next year that meet the Affordable Care Act’s standards. If Medica joins the ranks of health insurance companies leaving the individual marketplace because they have been losing millions of dollars, Nebraskans seeking individual policies may not be able to find health plans at any price…Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts said Blue Cross’s decision “demonstrates the failure of Obamacare and how the system was so poorly designed that great companies like Blue Cross Blue Shield can’t stay in the marketplace. It highlights that Congress needs to act to make the health care system sustainable.” An additional 86,000 people in Nebraska have ACA plans this year, about 50,000 of those from Aetna Health, which decided last month it wouldn’t offer the plans in 2018 because of financial losses. That will leave only Medica, which covers about 36,000 people this year.



Bottom lining this, Obamacare in Nebraska will be doing nothing for anyone paying its bills, nothing for anyone actually working, and in general nothing to improve healthcare in this country. Congress doesn’t need to make this system sustainable they need to kill it with fire, and then start looking at the real impediments to better healthcare, price transparency and consumer involvement in decision making.

Swedes Are Abandoning Their Public Insurance In Record Numbers

I suppose this should be directed at the “Socialism Works When The Right People Do It Crowd”. It seems in Sweden that workers paradise people are abandoning their universal healthcare at record rates, and taking up private insurance.

According to Sweden’s insurance trade industry organization, Svensk Försäkring:

The number of private health care insurance policies has increased in recent years. In 2011 about 440,000 people had private health care insurance. Most of these people have their policy paid by their employer.

The trend continues, with the English-language The Local reporting last week that “One in ten Swedes now has private health insurance.” The site also says, “More than half a million Swedes now have private health insurance,” though that seems to refer to the growth in the number of policies, with many more of the country’s 9.5 million people actually covered by private insurance.



When you look at why there is growth and employers are willing to foot the bill the answer is chilling

“It’s quicker to get a colleague back to work if you have an operation in two weeks’ time rather than having to wait for a year,” privately insured Anna Norlander told Sveriges Radio on Friday. “It’s terrible that I, as a young person, don’t feel I can trust the health care system to take care of me.”


Out of work for a year because you are waiting to be scheduled for surgery ?

California To Decriminalize Intentionally Infecting Someone With Aids

I feel sorry for conservatives, or even moderates living in California. Imagine having to know your government is perpetrating this kind of insanity on a daily basis.

 In a test of shifting attitudes about HIV, a group of state lawmakers has proposed that it no longer be a felony for someone to knowingly expose others to the disease by engaging in unprotected sex and not telling the partner about the infection.

The measure by state Sen. Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco) and others would make such acts a misdemeanor, a proposal that has sparked opposition from Republican lawmakers.

The same downgrade in crime level would apply to people who donate blood or semen without telling the blood or semen bank that they have acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, or AIDS, or have tested positive for human immunodeficiency virus, or HIV, the precursor to AIDS.

“HIV-related stigma is one of our main obstacles to reducing and ultimately eliminating infections,” Wiener said. “When you criminalize HIV or stigmatize people who have HIV it encourages people not to get tested, to stay in the shadows, not to be open about their status, not to seek treatment.”


I’m sure the people that get infected will be happy they won’t have to worry about stigma, just a disease that’s killing them.


Drink up That’s it for the Watercooler today. As always it’s an open thread


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