Who is Behind a New Insurance Watchdog

The group calls itself the Insurance Watchdog Coalition. They now have a website and on that website you’ll find a five-minute video extolling the virtues of the single-payer healthcare systems in Europe and comparing those systems to UnitedHealth and it’s “monopoly power.”

But just who is shining that bright light on UnitedHealth has become an issue for some in the insurance industry. The organization is a 501(c)4 nonprofit. That means, by law, it is not required to disclose who founded the group and who is in control.

Insurance Watchdog Coalition spokeswoman, Samantha Bullock says the people in control will make themselves known in the “coming weeks and months.” She notes the coalition has future plans for some paid advertising to explain its stance.

“Big Insurers have been on a buying spree with the goal of controlling as much of the health system as possible, and it’s resulted in record profits,” she said. “But for patients, doctors and pharmacists, it’s been a nightmare. Insurance Watchdog Coalition will shine a bright light on the impacts of these massive insurance conglomerates, and work to hold them accountable.”

The Insurance Watchdog Coalition “bright light” shine wants legislators in Congress and the states, and state insurance regulators, and the public to keep a better eye on UnitedHealth and other large health insurers that it thinks has too great an impact on consumers.

The video on the website also makes it clear that the coalition is likely going to push for the U.S. Congress to create and run a single-payer healthcare system. So why not tell the rest of the country who you are and why you have created the coalition?

It is understandable to question what is going on with UnitedHealth. While it may not have a monopoly as the group contends, UnitedHealth does have its fingers in a lot of the slices of the healthcare pie. It offers health insurance and is a pharmacy benefit manager, a physician network and a clearing house for medical claims done through its subsidiary, Optum.

UnitedHealth also operates the claims clearing house, ChangeHealth that was hacked in February and caused major disruption in provider payments.

An unidentified spokesperson for UnitedHealth Group said the company isn’t buying the push by the Insurance Watchdog Coalition. The person quoted said the health insurance market is deeply fragmented and the UnitedHealth business model is cutting waste and is improving the experience of patients.

“UnitedHealth Group is organized to help reduce that fragmentation by establishing value-based care models that better coordinate and align incentives among caregivers, payer and pharmacy offerings, thereby enabling us focus on the whole patient, connecting them to care throughout their health care journey,” the spokesperson said.

Source link: Washington Examiner — https://bit.ly/44K29FS

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