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Affordable Medicine

Blog Post
9/2/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
Corporations are shoving all of the increased cost of worker healthcare, and more, onto their employees, says a new study from the Kaiser Family Foundation. We already knew that companies are sitting on loads of cash while refusing to hire back laid-off workers, so this is just salt on the wound. At the same time, corporations are lobbying like...
Blog Post
8/25/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
At the shoe store, 40% off qualifies as at least pretty good. So why does regulators' approval of new, lower rates by Blue Cross of California not feel like victory? There are lots of reasons, but first is that the revised Blue Cross rate hikes are still in double digits, averaging 14% and as high as 20%, while average wages are still falling....
Blog Post
8/17/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
The worst definitely didn't happen in Seattle. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners deferred the worst insurance industry demands for weakening the implementation of health care reform. For a body so closely linked to the insurance industry, that counts as real progress. Credit is due to the state-level experts who wrote proposed...
Blog Post
8/12/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
It's going to be consumer advocates vs. a large scrum of health insurance company lobbyist in Seattle for the next several days at the summer meeting of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. In advance of that, we've asked for an investigation of what insurers are up to. The NAIC is writing proposed regulations to govern important...
Blog Post
8/11/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
There are days when the idea of private health insurance companies running health reform are more ludicrous than others. Today, we find that health insurance CEOs are raking in ever-higher compensation--up to $110 million a year for one retiring CEO. This is obviously where a lot of our ever-rising premium dollars are going. The lead on the LA...
Blog Post
7/28/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
Can insurance company lobbying of federal health regulation be turned into a gripping spy thriller? OK, no. But this is as close as it gets... a Huffpost story by former insurance exec Wendell Potter. He's crystal-clear about the lengths to which for-profit insurance companies will go, if it means they can keep their record profits and obscene...
Blog Post
7/8/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
A Colorado woman suffering from leukemia and in the middle of intensive chemotherapy gets laid off. Bad enough, but at least she can afford to keep her insurance through COBRA continuation. She pays her first COBRA bill and unknowingly it's a penny short--actually, a little under half a penny short. Then she gets a letter saying her health...
News Story
7/4/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
Ralf Burgert had no idea how costly toenail fungus could be. The San Rafael resident got rid of the common infection by treating it with the prescription medication Lamisil. It was the last thing on his mind when he applied for a health insurance policy on the individual market a short time later. He could not believe the response: Because of the...
Blog Post
7/1/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
After meeting with health insurance executives two weeks ago, President Obama reiterated an oft repeated promise: "The CEOs here today need to know that they're going to be required to publicly justify unreasonable premium increases." It's been a common refrain from those proponents of reform who understand the public is fed up with...
News Story
6/29/2010
Posted by Consumer Watchdog
A consumer group warned in a letter to U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius that health insurers “cannot be trusted” when lobbying over provisions of the new federal health reform law. Consumer Watchdog, which bills itself as a nonpartisan group, said investigations into California rate increases sought by...