HEALTH PLANS: It’s too late Riker, they’ve assimilated them all….

Today the Wellpoint Borg collective has assimilated the last of the resistant for-profit Federation Blues spaceships that was challenging them in the outer Galaxy. But shouldn’t it be the Empire crushing the rebels rather than being the rebels (or am I mixing two famous sci-fi memes).

Given that the attempts by other Blues to turn for-profit have mostly been nixed, the health insurance now left with a big chunk of regional non-profit Blues, and 6-10 big national for-profit giants (with Wellpoint and United being more gigantic than the rest) and Kaiser and its lookalikes. But there isn’t such a thing as a national health insurance company–all of them are basically still running local market plans, and all are vulnerable to the cream-skimming going on in the HDHP market.

I guess there are some consolidation savings somewhere in all this mix, but I don’t see how any of this revolutionizes healthcare, although it does seem to have succeeded in revolutionizing the bank accounts of lots of execs at formerly sleepy health plans.

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Ron Greiner

PS – Yesterday’s Forbes HSA article said there will be 6 million HSAs by 2008. That sounds low to me.

Ron Greiner

You bet the Blues are vulnerable. Whenever we start advertising in a market the local yokel Blues companies start saying they are the leader in HSAs, ha ha. Today the Michigan Blues has an article out saying they are going to get everybody on HSAs, oh please. These rookies don’t have a chance. This article says that you can use HSA funds for the purchase of health insurance. I think they better look at Federal law a little closer. Forbes had an article on HSAs yesterday and Dan Parren, who comments here sometimes, was quoted. Dan said to get an… Read more »