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Health care bill a gamble

The House approved a new health care bill. Does it deserve our support?

If you want cheaper insurance, which may not cover your illness or accidents, maybe. If you have pre-existing issues or are older maybe not.

It moves against "community rating" of the ACA, which assures more affordable premiums for the ill or old. It allows states to obtain "waivers," allowing plans to eliminate coverage for maternity care or cancer care, or whatever. It brings back the days of underwriting policies to limit coverage.

The hope is that high-risk pools would work. As I wrote before and as the Kaiser Foundation recently found, they never have worked in the past and cost money, losing lots of money every year.

It appears the goal is to lower the cost of premiums for many. That is a good idea, but it comes at a cost. It's hard to imagine those high-risk pools would be adequately funded.

It is optimistic to think coverage will be there for those who will need it.

This bill seems a gamble. The stakes would be ruinous for those who lose. It brings back the fear that underwriting may leave you out in the cold for unplanned medical expenses.

Oh, you might want to ask your representatives why this initial plan bars those "waivers" from their own insurance policies.

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