Glenn Kessler was right in his critique of Vice President Pence’s statement about selling health insurance across state lines [Pence makes a strange claim about selling health insurance across state lines, news, April 2]. But there are some key points missing that would provide a more complete picture of this issue.
States are the primary regulators of insurance. Over the years, special interests got their services specifically covered, everything from maternity care and dialysis to arch supports and hair implants. This made it very expensive for major private employers to provide uniform health-insurance packages for their employees working in many different states. Congress in 1974 allowed health-insurance plans to provide uniform benefits across the country for large employers.
People are concerned that some plans may exclude or limit coverage for prevention, detection and treatment of many serious diseases and conditions. These omissions may not be apparent. There isn’t much transparency in the health-care market.
Major private employers know that the larger the number in the insured pool, the lower the cost of that coverage.
Large risk pools provide the broadest coverage at the lowest price. Making the health-care marketplace more transparent comparing the success of various treatments and provider quality and negotiating drug prices would be a major step forward.
Ellen Goldstein, Washington