While the federal government plans to bail out the financial sector with $700 billion of taxpayer dollars, a growing number of tax payers are grappling to get themselves out of debt from unpaid health care bills.
Yesterday’s New York Times discussed two studies released on Wednesday by the Kaiser Family Foundation and the Center for Studying Health System Change. The studies show that more and more American families have debt from health care.
"Premiums for employer-sponsored health insurance rose to $12,680 annually for family coverage this year – with employees on average paying $3,354 out of their paychecks to cover their share of the cost," said the Kaiser Family Foundation news release of the study.
About 57 million Americans live in families struggling to pay their
medical bills. Of that group, 43 million people have some sort of
insurance coverage (often with very high premiums and deductibles) but
are still under financial stress.
One of the study’s conclusions
was that "…insurance coverage in and of itself may no longer be
sufficient to protect many people from the high cost of health
Perhaps this is renewed evidence of the need for government
The hands-off approach didn’t work out too well on Wall Street. Is health care next?
And witness McCain weak’s “Harry and Louise-esque 1.0” reference last night about “the government running the health care system” slap directed at his opponent. IMO, that dog just didn’t bark…..gonna need a little more substance then mind numbing sound byte characterizations.
No wonder Americans are opposing this bailout in record numbers. They don’t see ANY upside for themselves. Their bills will not go away or get reduced, they will still struggle with fuel costs and food prices – while wall street gets pumped with fresh cash and their taxes go up to pay for this. Jobs will continue to be shipped outside the country and healthcare will continue to put more people at risk. The problem with this bailout plan is that it is not a comprehensive economic strategy for the country, just another private bailout package like we’ve had to do several times over that last 20 years of de/no-regulation. Like healthcare, another costly tweak of a failing system.