The Best-Laid Plans …
Bringing preventive health care to poor Missourians is a laudable goal. But going through health insurance is the wrong way to do it:
The Insure Missouri plan, which would allow qualified participants to sign up for a number of private health insurance plans, would cost $631.2 million by fiscal 2010 and be funded through a combination of state funds and federal money that goes to hospitals to help pay for indigent care.
The purpose of health insurance is to protect your other assets, such as your house, so that you don’t lose them if you have unexpected medical expenses. It’s not meant to pay for routine preventive care. When we make people pay for routine expenses through insurance, insurance becomes more expensive for everyone.
So why are politicians always trying to sign people up for insurance? Robert Fogel explains in this book that taxes on insurance create an incentive for lawmakers to expand insurance programs. Governor Blunt seems to have fallen into that trap.