Mr. Kristof also recounts a horrible story: A man who suffers an abnormal growth of blood vessels in his brain, which has rendered him unable to work. Of course, he lost his employment-based benefits, and was unable to acquire individual insurance because of his severe condition. As usual, the story has an element of unreality, because Mr. Kristof claims that the man exhausted his COBRA continuation coverage, after which his wife could not get him covered as a dependent on her employer-based plan because of his condition.
I write element of unreality because (as Ive noted before in other cases), the information given suggests that the man should not have suffered an exclusion for his pre-existing condition. My reading of Oregon law indicates that an employer does not have to offer any dependent coverage. However, if it does, he has to cover all dependents without differentiation. Because his wife was already covered, and he had continuous creditable coverage and exhausted COBRA. both Oregon and federal law should ensure that the man would get coverage.
But I digress: My point is that Mr. Kristof knows that the man is enrolled in Oregon Medicaid! And the man cannot find a specialist to treat him because reimbursement is too low. From this, Mr. Kristof concludes that we need more government-centered health care.
There is really no explaining what kind of thought-process arrives at such a conclusion.
This blog post originally appeared on State House Call.