Why We Need Health Care Reform Now

What’s the rush?

That’s the GOP’s talking point on health care reform. What’s the rush? Why the hurry? Why not just put it off for another few months?

This is why:

Health insurance giant Aetna is planning to force up to 650,000 clients to drop their coverage next year as it seeks to raise additional revenue to meet profit expectations.

In a third-quarter earnings conference call in late October, officials at Aetna announced that in an effort to improve on a less-than-anticipated profit margin in 2009, they would be raising prices on their consumers in 2010. The insurance giant predicted that the company would subsequently lose between 300,000 and 350,000 members next year from its national account as well as another 300,000 from smaller group accounts.

[Emphasis mine]

650,000 are going to lose health insurance because Aetna needs to grow their profit margins. That’s more than the entire population of the state of North Dakota, and that’s  just one insurance company.

You want to know what the hurry is? Why don’t you go ask those 650,000 Americans now without insurance? Or the 45,000 Americans who die each year because they lack access to adequate health care. I’m sure they’d be able to tell you.