The Battle of Vermont

I was sent this interesting article about Vermont’s attempt to start a “single payer” health insurance system.   It was written by Wendell Potter, former head of PR for CIGNA for twenty years.   Here are some interesting tidbits about the behind-the-scenes propaganda that goes on at these big time insurance companies:

  • “Part of the strategy is to get key groups of individuals to begin raising doubts, to get Vermonters to second-guess themselves. Among the first groups the insurers have targeted are those most easily spooked — certain business owners and physicians, especially specialists who thrive in the current system”
  • “Insurers and employers have been collaborating for the past several years in a mutually beneficial effort to shift more of us into high-deductible policies. The higher the deductible, the less insurers and employers have to pay for our care. This collaboration has been so successful that increasing numbers of American families filing for bankruptcy are, at least theoretically, insured.”
  • “Ironically, this skin doctor (dermatologist)  joined other physician specialists in arguing that health care costs would never stabilize until patients had “more skin in the game,” a term my former colleagues used frequently as we tried to spin the “advantages” of high-deductible plans.”

First, I agree that the insurance companies are killing us.  Second, I wonder what this dude made at Cigna and if he is giving it back now that he had this epiphany.  Third, I still need to be convinced that a single payer system will work because our citizens want what they want, when they want it and want it for free.  That would not fly in other countries who use this type of system.


9130cookie-checkThe Battle of Vermont