Sunday, April 21, 2013

Worst of both worlds in religious health sharing "fix"

The Commonwealth of Kentucky's decade long war against Christian health sharing group Medishare ended two weeks ago when the state "allowed" the Florida religious organization to return to helping members here escape the ravages of government-regulated health insurance.

The original version of Senate Bill 3 I proposed last July would have restored the most effective regulatory mechanism to health coverage -- market forces. The final compromise bill was better than the disaster we had before Gov. Beshear signed SB 3 on April 5, but the bill's protections for consumers are woefully insufficient.

Kentucky law now requires customers of Christian Medishare, Samaritan Ministries and Christian HealthCare Ministries to throw away any legal protection they might have against the organizations in the event of a dispute.

Yes, you read that correctly.

This error creates a black market in Christian health sharing for consumers in Kentucky. Think about it: if something goes wrong, you have no recourse.

Further, United States Code 26, Section 5000A, (d), (2), (B) contains a grandfather clause that allows only health sharing groups in continuous operation since 1999 to continue to exist under ObamaCare. So we are protecting providers from consumers on two fronts. Not good.

Stand by for proposed state and federal fixes to this nonsense tomorrow.