Saturday, August 8, 2009

The Health Insurance Industry is "Sick for Profit" : Brave New Films

Brave New Films has launched a video and a website, Sick for Profit, which details just why the health care industry doesn't want change to come to America: profit, and executive compensation. It's not about poor care with a public option; it's that execs and shareholders would lose money.

Why should we let profits determine who lives and dies? While some rail that a public system will create a "death panel" that would determine what health care is provided, it should be clear to anyone with common sense that a panel comprised of people who have little if anything to gain from denying health care, and that is dedicated to providing the best health care to all Americans, is a far better system than one that determines who lives or dies based on the bottom line.

Sick for Profit's video details exactly how much executives in the health care industry get, and shows real-life stories of people denied health care for capricious reasons by companies out to increase profits.

For example, did you know that UnitedHealthcare CEO Stephen Hemsley owns $744,232,068 in unexercised stock options. His 2007 Compensation was $13.2 million; his 2008 Compensation was $3,241,042. I'm unsure how he can live on that low 2008 salary.

CIGNA CEO Edward Hanway has, according to Forbes, made $120.51 million over the last five years. The total value of his unexercised stock options is $28,881,000.

Humana CEO Michael McCallister's 2007 compensation was $10.3 million. His 2008 compensation was $1,017,308. His unexercised stock options total $60,865,194.

This is where the wastage is in health care. A public option would eliminate all all these grandiose expenditures. And for those concerned about poor care, in fact, according to UNICEF statistics that can be accessed here, and are current as of 2007, Cuba (yes, Cuba!), the U.K. and Canada all have lower infant mortality rates than we do. The U.K. and Canada have longer lifespans than we do. Cuba is the same. Forget expense; isn't life priceless?

Watch the video:
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2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Joanna Joshua in this video is the daughter of the Cigna Victim who founds united patients of America. Dylan is her grandson.

Three generations of this family have been abused by the insurance Industry, and are fighting back.

roger said...

It is common sense that a health care panel who if anything, to gain slightly from denying that all Americans and is dedicated to providing the best health care includes any person to be clear, than the one that determines who lives or dies should have a better system is based on bottom line.
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