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for 20 years, Wendell Potter worked as a senior executive at health insurance companies, and saw how they confuse their customers and dump the sick -- all so they can satisfy their Wall Street investors.
Wendell Potter is an Analyst at the Center for Public Integrity; Former insurance company executive; Author of Deadly Spin: An Insurance Company Insider Speaks Out on How Corporate PR Is Killing Health Care and Deceiving Americans and and Obamacare: What’s in It for Me? What Everyone Needs to Know About the Affordable Care Act

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OpEdNews Member for 615 week(s) and 1 day(s)

62 Articles, 0 Quick Links, 3 Comments, 0 Diaries, 0 Polls

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Prescription Prices Ver5, From ImagesAttr
(17 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Monday, June 1, 2015
The best health care system in the world? Nonsense! Americans spend more per capita on health care than people anywhere else in the world, yet outcomes in every other developed country are better on almost every measure, from infant mortality to life expectancy. A big reason for that is our collective gullibility. We continue to believe what many politicians tell us, despite evidence to the contrary: that we have the best health care system in the world.
(5 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Wednesday, July 1, 2009
Health Insurance Exec Whistleblower Wendell Potter Testifies Before Congress I worked as a senior executive at health insurance companies, and I saw how they confuse their customers and dump the sick "" all so they can satisfy their Wall Street investors. I know from personal experience that members of Congress and the public have good reason to question the honesty and trustworthiness of the insurance industry
(6 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Tuesday, November 29, 2011
Does the U.S. Have the World's Best Health Care System? Yes, If You're Talking About the Third World Americans are not getting nearly as much bang for the health care buck as citizens of most other developed countries -- and even some countries in the developing world.
(2 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Friday, April 22, 2011
Ryan's Medicare Plan Would Be a Windfall for Insurance Companies The Ryan Medicare plan would represent a windfall of unprecedented proportions for insurance corporations and other businesses.
(9 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Saturday, February 12, 2011
The Insurers' Real Agenda for Change Congress gave health insurers exactly what they wanted by including in last year's health care legislation a requirement that all Americans not eligible for Medicare or Medicaid buy coverage from a private insurance company. Now they aim to strip from the health care law key regulations and consumer protections that aren't to their liking.
(13 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Monday, August 1, 2011
Fresh Evidence That Health Insurers Value Profits Over People Insurance industry executives are experts at talking in code, which makes it difficult to understand just how much they value profits over people. Occasionally, though, they slip up, as Aetna's chief financial officer, Joseph Zubretsky, did last Wednesday during his company's conference call with analysts.
Health, From ImagesAttr
(4 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Monday, March 23, 2015
Fed war on health care spending abuse needs to include Medicare Advantage Commentary: feds say they're catching health care crooks, but Center reporting showed that Medicare Advantage avoided scrutiny
(3 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Thursday, December 15, 2011
Keep Nataline's Spirit of Christmas Alive ...insurance companies essentially have the power to make what amount to life and death decisions.
former Senator Joe Lieberman, From ImagesAttr
(9 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Tuesday, February 17, 2015
Elimination of 'public option' threw consumers to the insurance wolves Lieberman worked with insurers to eliminate 'public option'.
(4 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Tuesday, May 31, 2011
Health Insurers Have Had Their Chance Of the many supporters of a single-payer health care system in the United States, some of the most ardent are small business owners who have struggled to continue offering coverage to their workers. Among them are David Steil, a small business owner and former Republican -- yes, Republican -- state legislator in Pennsylvania who earlier this year became president of the advocacy group Health Care 4 All PA
(2 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Sunday, May 1, 2011
Health Execs Get Richer as Some Americans Beg for Help to Pay Bills Molly shared this tragic healthcare horror story with us that evening at F&M because Scott cannot.Scott, a Lancaster attorney in the prime of life, was stricken with ALS, Lou Gehrig's disease. He can communicate via miracles of modern technology,by moving his eyes,but he cannot speak or move on his own,nor live without 24-hour care, a respirator, etc. The bad news is they have exhausted his lifetime coverage cap.
-, From ImagesAttr
(2 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Wednesday, October 20, 2010
Thank You, UnitedHealth Group. Your Jaw-Dropping Profit Announcement May Be Just What the Doctor Ordered. Are our health insurance premiums just being funneled straight into corporate bank accounts now, with little or no pretense? Perhaps after seeing how the Banksters and BP can screw half the country while everyone is watching, health insurance companies feel more emboldened than ever to shaft America. But could this be one shaft too many?
(4 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Thursday, June 9, 2011
Blue Shield's PR Coup Non-profit health insurer Blue Shield announced they would be capping their profits at 2%, a move designed to boost PR after being panned for announcing premium increases over 80% despite billions in reserves.
(7 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Thursday, September 29, 2011
The Affordable Care Act? What the Heck Is That? The Kaiser Family Foundation just released the findings of its annual survey of businesses to determine how much the cost of employer-sponsored health coverage has gone up. There were some unexpected findings. What seems clear is that insurers decided last year to charge their customers considerably more than necessary this year to be able to meet Wall Street's profit expectations;
(1 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Wednesday, May 18, 2011
Got Health Insurance? Pray You Won't Get "Purged" U.S. health insurers are reporting record profits, and their CEOs are topping the list of highest paid corporate executives while they purge small businesses they no longer consider profitable enough.
(1 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Thursday, June 30, 2011
Insurers' Bait and Switch Over the past several years, insurers have been implementing a strategic plan to "migrate" (their term) all of their policyholders out of traditional indemnity and managed care plans into so-called "consumer-driven" plans, which feature high deductibles. They have been luring people into these plans by setting premiums for high-deductible plans lower than HMOs and PPOs, at least initially
waiting room, From ImagesAttr
(1 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Monday, March 30, 2015
The enduring myth of cost shifting don't believe insurers line that fed cuts boosting costs
(4 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Tuesday, August 23, 2011
Health Insurers to Consumers: Want to Know What You're Buying Before You Buy It? Only If You Pay for It Last week, the Obama administration released the long-anticipated disclosure rules that insurers and employers will have to comply with starting next year.
(3 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Wednesday, July 1, 2009
Obama's False Friends of Health Reform I'm hoping President Obama realizes that some of the folks who've been currying favor with him are not, as they claim, bringing "solutions" to the health care reform table. Most Americans -- especially those who voted for him -- want nothing to do with the kind of "reforms" they are peddling.
From ImagesAttr
(4 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Wednesday, August 29, 2018
How big pharma buys goodwill: Set up a foundation, stage media events, please politicians 72,000 Americans died last year from drug overdoses. Many of them were young people, and most became addicted by using prescription opioids. Were it not for the business practices of some of the biggest corporations in America that profit from the manufacture and distribution of massive quantities of opioids, many of those we have lost likely would still be with us. How are those big corporations responding?
(2 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Saturday, June 20, 2015
For-profit hospitals mark up prices Commentary: huge markups are routine, and there's nothing to stop them
(3 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Tuesday, June 28, 2011
The Insurance Industry's Scheme to Circumvent Reform and Make You Pay More Than Ever for Health Care In its ongoing attempt to weaken a key provision of the health care reform law -- the one that requires insurers to spend at least 80 percent of premiums on medical care -- the insurance industry is predicting dire consequences for people enrolled in health savings accounts (HSAs) if lawmakers don't act soon.
John Roberts, From ImagesAttr
(14 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Friday, June 26, 2015
Insurers' arguments key to Supreme Court decision It is clear from both the first paragraph and closing comments in the Supreme Court's decision upholding Obamacare subsidies that the justices listened more closely to the insurance industry than perhaps any other party.
(1 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Monday, November 14, 2011
A Determined Dog Goes After Insurers Again to Save Consumers Billions If there is one organization that insurers despise and fear more than any other, it surely must be Consumer Watchdog. Since its founding in 1985, Los Angeles-based Consumer Watchdog has dogged insurers relentlessly and played a key role numerous times in forcing them to change business practices and price their policies more fairly. I first heard of the organization in 1996 when I was still an insurance industry spokesman.
(1 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Monday, February 27, 2012
Health Care Myths and Realties: Seeking the truth about high-deductible plans. Health Insurance companies suggest that companies who haven't moved all of their employees into a high-deductible plan are inept. But studies by nonprofit organizations that don't sell insurance have found that high-deductible plans "have significantly greater difficulty" accessing care due to cost compared to people in plans with lower or no deductible, and that people who are very sick are at a particular disadvantage.
(1 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Tuesday, January 10, 2012
Rick Santorum Would be Best President Health Insurers' Money Could Buy Wendell Potter exposes presidential candidate Rick Santorum's role as the best friend the health insurance industry had while representing Pennsylvania in the Senate.
Titanium pedicle screws, From ImagesAttr
SHARE More Sharing        Monday, June 22, 2015
Industry lobbies hard to snuff out tax on medical devices Industry contributions and lobbying convince U.S. House to repeal tax on medical devices, endangering Obamacare.
(5 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Monday, January 23, 2012
Park City Vantage Point Puts Tragedy of American Health Care in Vivid Relief A grieving Canadian family faces financial ruin because their daughter fell ill and died in the U.S. Only in America could this happen. If there was ever a case for single-payer healthcare this is it.
WATCH: Democrats seek to make Amy Coney Barrett confirmation hearing about healthcare The Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing of Judge Amy Coney Barrett began Monday with a sharp emphasis by Democrats on what her ..., From YouTubeVideos
(3 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Wednesday, October 21, 2020
Judge Amy Coney Barret's Laughable Thinking on Health Insurance Judge Amy Coney Barrett says she'd base rulings about health insurance on how "the founders" might have intended. This might make sense if health insurance companies actually existed then. As a former insurance executive, here's why her approach is laughable when it comes to health care.
(2 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Thursday, July 7, 2011
Death Panels Real and Imagined
From ImagesAttr
(2 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Sunday, May 26, 2013
Help Health Care Advocate Donna Smith Get the Care She Needs--And Pay the $855 Aetna is Demanding Donna Smith has worked tirelessly to gain healthcare for every American. Please help her now.
(1 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Tuesday, August 9, 2011
Marcus Welby, M.D. Had it Right: House Calls Save Money and Improve Care Dr. Bruce Kinosian still makes house calls. He's convinced that if more doctors did what he does, and as the TV character Marcus Welby did back in the '60s and '70s, we could eliminate billions of dollars we currently spend in this country in an often ineffective -- and almost always unnecessarily expensive -- effort to get people well.
(1 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Monday, January 16, 2012
Mitt Romney's Health Care Fantasy World Wendell Potter explains that not everyone can cavalierly "fire" their insurance companies, as Mitt Romney boast he enjoys doing. In the real world the insurance company holds all the cards, we have little choice but to go submit to their demands.
(1 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Thursday, January 26, 2012
The High Cost of Allowing Health Insurers to Continue Keeping Us in the Dark Wendell Potter cdontinues to hold the Administration's feet to the fire as it implements the Affordable Care Act
Stethoscope, From PixabayPhotos
(6 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Wednesday, March 10, 2021
COVID Bill is a Windfall for Health Insurance Companies As a former health insurance exec who quit the business, let me tell you: No one will be more excited about the new COVID-19 package than my old friends in the corporate insurance industry.
Florida refusing to implement part of health care law .Florida is not going to implement Obamacare. We are not going to expand Medicaid and we're not going to implement exchanges.. Furthermore, Wright ..., From ImagesAttr
(3 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Wednesday, August 21, 2013
Doing "As Much Harm As Possible' to Florida's Insured - Republicans continue to fight Obamacare in Sunshine State First do no harm. That's a tenet of medical ethics that future doctors worldwide are taught in medical school. If only the people we elect to represent us were required to take such an oath. Florida state lawmakers recently passed a law that will allow health insurance companies to gouge Floridians and will actually be required by law to mislead their Florida customers about why they're hiking their premiums.
From ImagesAttr
(2 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Tuesday, June 18, 2013
An Outbreak of Sanity There is reason to be hopeful that our lawmakers can put aside their ideological differences every now and then and do what makes sense for constituents. In fact, last week some of the people we have elected to represent us--at least at the state level--even showed a willingness to put careers at risk by doing what they believe is the right thing.
who loves a dentist ?, From FlickrPhotos
(1 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Wednesday, February 17, 2016
Is Crony Capitalism a Big Reason for America's Dental Health Care Crisis? For an example of how Big Money in politics is causing real harm to average Americans, look at the practice of dentistry in this country. The United States is facing a dental care crisis for a number of reasons. First, dental care has become so expensive many of us can't afford to go the dentist.
(4 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Friday, April 5, 2013
Industry Pushes High-Deductible Insurance Plans Increasingly, employers of all sizes are eliminating choice and offering only high-deductible plans -- euphemistically referred to in the insurance world as consumer-directed health plans or HDHPs. Within the next few years, most Americans not only will find that the plans they've been enrolled in for years are no longer available, but that they will also have to pay much more out-of-pocket
SHARE More Sharing        Wednesday, September 2, 2009
Rally Against Wall Street's Health Care Takeover I'm ashamed that I let myself get caught up in deceitful and dishonest PR campaigns that worked so well, hundreds of thousands of our citizens have died, and millions of others have lost their homes and been forced into bankruptcy, so that a very few corporate executives and their Wall Street masters could become obscenely rich.
(1 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Monday, November 12, 2012
Get Ready to Get Spun -- Again -- By Masters of Spin The big healthcare monopolies gave Republicans a vast amount of money in hopes they would win the election & repeal or gut the Affordable Care Act. They failed. Expect Karen Ignagni, president of America's Health Insurance Plans & her healthcare industry cohorts to turn up the heat & the spin to get more control of your health & money. Beware.
(1 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Friday, December 2, 2011
OK White House, Now Give Consumers Some Quality Time to Talk Health Care The Obama administration should hold meetings with and listen to consumers and consumer advocates as well as the Aetna execs and lobbyists they've met with.
From ImagesAttr
SHARE More Sharing        Tuesday, June 11, 2013
A Rare Bipartisan Idea to Improve Medicaid and Save Money Around the time the House of Representatives was voting for the 30-somethingth time to repeal Obamacare, two lawmakers from Texas -- Democrat Gene Green and Republican Joe Barton -- introduced legislation to fix a problem that most folks with private insurance know nothing about. That's because it only affects the poorest among us who are eligible for Medicaid.
From ImagesAttr
SHARE More Sharing        Tuesday, June 25, 2013
OPINION: Pro-industry amendments lard up Missouri insurance legislation Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon is facing a dilemma. Should he sign a bill that was intended to help many state residents get coverage for cost-effective health care that insurers often refuse to pay for? Or veto the bill because it is loaded with amendments that will benefit insurers and force many Missourians to pay far more for medical care than they do now?
(1 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Wednesday, February 22, 2012
Taking the Initiative in a Struggle Against Excessive Rate Increases California has opted to go the route of a ballot initiative to empower the California Insurance Commissioner to reject excessive health insurance rate increases. A similar measure placed before the California Legislature last year was defeated following intense lobbying by the insurance industry. The Affordable Care Act empowers Federal and State regulators to criticize excessive rate increases, but not to reject them.
SHARE More Sharing        Tuesday, February 14, 2012
Even the Catholic Bishops Should Bless This Health Insurance Mandate At long last, despite hefty lobbying by the health insurance industry, HHS has issued a final rule requiring insurers and employers to spell out what their what their healthcare benefit plans cover and what it will cost the insured if they get sick, injured, or pregnant.
(1 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Rate Shock' Will Be at Heart of New Scare Campaign Against Obamacare One of the most ill-advised promises President Obama made during the health care reform debate was this: "If you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care plan." He should have known better.
(5 comments) SHARE More Sharing        Monday, February 6, 2012
The Battle for Vermont's Health Vermont is seeking to become the first state to institute single-payer healthcare. That will never happen if the health insurance special interests have anything to say about it.
SHARE More Sharing        Monday, June 4, 2012
Guess Who Would Benefit From Privatizing Medicare? If you think the idea of privatizing Medicare has gone away, that the health insurance industry has thrown in the towel on one of its biggest goals, there was fresh evidence last week that you would be wrong.

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