I must respond to U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford’s recent op-ed.
As someone who attended two of his town halls, I applaud his courage for actually showing up and doing his job. I also agree with the notion that jamming a bill through in 17 days is wrong.
He is also correct in saying the public overwhelmingly supports the Affordable Care Act’s protection of health insurance coverage for those with pre-existing conditions.
Unfortunately, as many in Congress have shown us, he misunderstands community rating, thinking it preserves the protection on pre-existing conditions. It does not. If we cancel community rating, it allows insurers to rate each of us individually based on our health status (pre-existing conditions or lack thereof).
Do you really think that those in age group 55-64, who virtually all have a pre-existing condition, will get a rate that they are able to afford from insurance companies that need to make a profit? High-risk pools that are the “alternate” have failed wherever they have been used.
Any insurance is based on the fact that those who don’t use it pay for those who do use it, under the assumption that it is there when you need it. Which leaves us with the basic premise that insurance is a three-legged stool: individual mandate, community rating and subsidies for those unable to afford the rates.
Hilton Head Island