Thursday, February 17, 2011

A Tale of Two Insurers

And it befell in the days of President Obama, when he led the Administration and so reigned, that he held a mighty siege against a great alliance of health insurers. Using a great and wondrous rhetoric, he issued forth with a mighty host and wonderly portrayed health insurers as corporate rabid dogs that should slain'd by a forcefull and enlightened federalism. And a law dubbed The Affordable Care Act was passed.

And so the Disease Management Care Blog hearkens back to Anno Domini 1999, when Independence Blue Cross (IBX) in the towne of Philadelphia was locked in desperate and mortal unpleasantness with hospitals, with the force of two-way lawsuits with many accusations of unrighteous and monopolistic pricing at both small community hospitals and great premier academic centers. The DMCB tells of IBX's then CEO and Duke, Fred DiBona, by the faith he owed us and of pleasant countenance, the crying of his many consternations as a very unjust deed of arms. He personally fell passing sore into disrepute, unable to make joy at any public function without news-bards, city-royalty or clergy laying upon him to cease the ungracious slewing of hospital profitability. And the CEO and Duke DiBona retreated to his castle grievously wounded. And a consensus rose up in the land of "hospitals one, insurers zero."

And yet, while the IBX and other insurers throughout the land were put to flight, policy has made a passing change. Forced into unending jousting tourneys defending The Act unto a host of wrathful Congressional Knights, even the fearsome and noble Sebelius has become a new found believer in State autonomy and putting limits on coverage. For inconvenient political and fiscal reality has rendered onto the Administration a great many insights on the basics of health insurance.

Yet, that is not foremost in the possible undoing of Mr. Obama's carefully laid planning. For IBX has obtained a greatly ironic revenge after the passing of so many years. For now, Massachusetts Blue Cross Blue Shield in Boston is set upon smoting Partners Healthcare, while the populace of that honored land has been of unhappyness over hospitals' billion dollar capital campaigns, hand-off errors and many unsavory business tactics.

Which is why the DMCB so asks if the lay-public now holds a more favorable countenance upon the insurers and is less passing glad with their hospitals. What else can explain the continuance of the Massachusetts Blue Cross Blue Shield campaign? Health insurers are not as angels, but the field of battle now seems of more even level. For the people may be coming to see the insurers as being innocently obliged to pass through the vexsome cost increases, are often blessed with not-for profit status, are preserved by the Affordable Care Act and, of greatest consequence, are seen as - perhaps - unfairly and woefully set upon by the mighty Obama.

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