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Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Health Insurance Embellishments

A year ago, the talk was about health care reform. Then as the legislative process got under way and politics took over, the subject morphed into health insurance reform.

More recently, there has been increasing reference to health care overhaul.

Yesterday The Boston Globe published a list of the subjects covered in the legislation adopted by the US Congress last Sunday. .

The list consists of twenty-three loosely related provisions directed at prohibiting certain objectionable insurance practices, remedying perceived inadequacies, implementing improvements, and expanding benefits. The list also includes financial measures that purport to raise revenues to cover the cost of the program.

The one major change is the requirement that everybody (well, almost everybody) have health insurance or pay a penalty. But that does not take effect until 2014, two congressional and one presidential elections away and goodness knows what will happen between now and then.

I think of reform as being a basic revamping. I think of overhaul as a replacement of worn and broken parts. The Globe list did not seem to me to warrant being characterized as either.

I think a more appropriate title for the bill would be the Health Insurance Embellishment Act of 2010.

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