“Gold-plated” vs. tin foil….

I know President Bush’s health care proposal is pretty much dead, but I wanted to address his reference to “gold-plated” health plans.

He is actually referring to comprehensive health coverage that could actually provide patients protection from crushing medical bills should they ever get sick, and I suspect we’ll hear others begin to characterize health insurance (insurance that actually works, that is) this way too.

“The more expensive the health insurance plan you receive through your employer, the more tax relief you get.” (Fact sheet on Bush’s 2007 Health Care proposal).

Bush needs a reality check. How many people, when choosing their health plans, look at the list of offerings and say “Which one will give me more tax relief?” The more relevant questions people ask are: What will my monthly premium payment be? How much will my co-pays/co-insurance be? Is my doctor covered? How much is my deductible?

The truth is, if you can afford it, you choose a plan that you think is going to be a good shield, protecting you against the misfortune of getting sick, getting cancer, having asthma and having flat feet. It also protects you against having to foot the entire bill for having this misfortune.

The kind of coverage President Bush is actually suggesting we get, something that’s more “affordable,” is more like tin foil — a thin layer of protection that tears easily and exposes us to the elements.

Health Access California promotes quality, affordable health care for all Californians.
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