Thursday, November 15, 2007

Will making people buy health insurance really work?

There were voices singing out early on that Massachusetts plan to mandate health insurance might not be the simple panacea that some heralded it to be.

The push-come-to-shove-day is almost on us and this report indicates there are about 100,000 souls still uninsured. About one half may have incomes too high to qualify for state subsidies, but at this point no one is really sure of the numbers. More details can be found here. It seems that there is a contingent of healthy young men who don't want to spend there money on health insurance. It is time for the health insurance police to mobilize and make these people get insurance. We know how effective the state is in making people have insurance.

I have lived in two states with mandatory auto insurance. I was involved in two minor accidents , one in each state. As luck would have it, in both instances the other party did not have the mandatory insurance. Fortunately, I had on my policy a provision known as "coverage for uninsured motorists". Now why would such coverage be offered?

The insurance mandate idea reminded this Business Week contributor of the story of King Canute who tried to stop the rising waters by commanding the water to roll back.

1 comment:

Chuck McKay said...

So the plan is to require everyone to pay for health insurance... except those who can't afford it.

Why not just require those low income people to make more money? It makes just as much sense.