As Speaker of House Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.) rounds up support on health care reform on Capitol Hill, President Obama is hitting the road to garner popular support for the legislation.
Speaking before an audience in Strongsville, Ohio, Obama targeted health insurers. “Even if you’ve got good health insurance, what’s happening to your premiums?” Obama said. “What’s happening to your co-payments? What’s happening to your deductible? They’re all going up. That’s money straight out of your pocket. So the bottom line is this: The status quo on health care is simply unsustainable. We can’t have a system that works better for the insurance companies than it does for the American people.”
Obama enumerated many of the conditions insurers would operate under if the legislation becomes law. Health insurers would all new insurance plans would be required to offer free preventive care to their customers, Obama said. Also, insurance companies would be banned from placing lifetime or restrictive annual limits on the amount of care patients receive. “This year, insurance companies will be banned forever from denying coverage to children with preexisting conditions,” he said. “This year, under this legislation, insurance companies will be banned from dropping your coverage when you get sick. Those practices would end.”
Obama also mentioned the inclusion of an individual mandate for consumers but said that insurers would be pay a higher fee as a result. “And, yes, we will set a new fee on insurance companies because they stand to gain millions more customers who are buying insurance.”
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