Circling the (profitmaking) wagon….

Calling legislative leader’s health bill AB8 (Nunez/Perata) “dangerous legislation,” insurance brokers are lining up to oppose health reform in California.

Brokers lambast the bill for “prevent(ing) you from providing services to many of your clients.

Since they’re brokers, I’m guessing that service would be: selling health insurance so that people can have coverage.

First off, AB8 expands coverage. So if insurance brokers had pure hearts, they’d actually appreciate the fact that Democratic leaders are trying to make sure more people had coverage, right?

The fact is, brokers probably aren’t looking out for the uninsured: It’s about their ability to make money. For the record, there is nothing in AB8 that specifically prohibits brokers from selling insurance. However, for consumers who get health coverage through the state — rather than through their employers or on their own — there would be no broker fee because the state doesn’t pay broker fees. (The same situation would exist if we were debating the governor’s plan, which also calls for a larger role for the state to provide consumers health insurance.)

Obviously, not getting a broker fee from the state would cut into said broker’s profits. But they might see more action from businesses since businesses would be required to offer coverage.

And even if they don’t, is it really worth blowing up our chance to try and fix a system that everyone admits is broken?

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