Letter: Keeping Children's Hospital out of network a health care failure

December 3, 2013 

Seattle Children's Hospital filed suit against the Washington state Insurance Commissioner's office for allowing insurers to sell policies which specifically exclude Children's Hospital from in-network providers. Since the Oct. 1 opening of the state exchange, five of seven insurers have don't include Children's among in-network providers.

This is causing anguish among families whose sick children require specialty care. Insurers defend their refusal to cover treatment on straight money grounds. Insurers argue they can only make a profit from new policies if they limit which doctors and hospitals are considered in-network providers. All across the country, new insurance policies are based on narrower, more restrictive networks of treatment delivery.

Big hospital chains also restrict what insurance carriers they will honor. Hospital systems want big name insurers that can likely pay higher reimbursement rates for services.

This pattern of restrictive insurance coverage is characteristic of the intent of Obamacare all along. Money! Wall Street's looting is guaranteed, while more people sicken and die. While private hospitals typically earn 5 percent returns, private insurers take nearly 38 percent off the top!

Let's return to the 1946 Hill-Burton standard of building hospitals in areas of need. Nearly 500,000 bed spaces were created in nearly 11,000 care facilities built during Hill-Burton.

ROB DUPUY, Pasco

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