Thursday, September 24, 2009

One-Half out of Five

In response to John Cornyn (R-TX) being obtuse, Max Baucus is describing some modest changes to regulations on employer-sponsored insurance. However, it only applies to new enrollees; that is, if you stay at the same company, the regulations don't apply to you.
  • First-dollar coverage
  • Limits on annual out-of-pocket maxmimums
  • No "unreasonable" annual or lifetime caps.
In addition, someone on the committee (I want to say either Ron Wyden or Olympia Snowe) has put forth an amendment allowing employees of a large, self-insured firm to enter the exchange if their employer doesn't offer an affordable insurance plan that's as good as a bronze-level plan.

This is news to me, and better than nothing. Still, it sucks. McDonald's can offer its employees "insurance" that's not as effectively regulated as something they can get in the exchange, and we're relying on employees to figure out that there's a better deal out there. Nonetheless, baby steps.

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