Did someone just chuck pre-existing conditions overboard?

So I’m reading the latest NYT article about the health care mayhem going on in Washington today, and the article throws out some possible “compromises” a new pared-down health care bill could contain. And I see this:

Lawmakers, Congressional aides and health policy experts said the package might plausibly include these elements:

¶Insurers could not deny coverage to children under the age of 19 on account of pre-existing medical conditions.

The only reason to specify that children under the age of 19 won’t be denied coverage is because you plan on letting everyone 19 and over BE denied coverage for pre-existing conditions. Even the lousy Senate and House bills outlawed that. But here’s the rub. If you ban pre-existing conditions for everyone, then you need to mandate that everyone get coverage, in order to keep insurance premiums down, and then you’d need to subsidize people who can’t afford to buy coverage, and the vicious circle begins. It also wouldn’t kill you to have some real competition in the market to help keep rates down for everyone, but that was called the public option, and we all know what happened to that.

Anyway, this new compromise talked about in the NYT article would only cover half of the 30 million that would have gotten new coverage under the Senate plan. So, if they’re going to only cover half, they must figure they can’t outlaw pre-existing conditions for everyone.


Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown (1989); and worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, and as a stringer for the Economist. Frequent TV pundit: O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline & Reliable Sources. Bio, .

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