Archive for December 12th, 2009

TRS ActiveCare Financials

Saturday, December 12th, 2009

For fiscal year ending August 31, 2009, claims to contributions (loss ratio) is approximately 95%. Taking into account cost of administration, the net results for the fund is (-) $69,036,559. With established reserves, the net balance of the fund is estimated to be $ 486,766,302. 

Claim costs pmpy has increased from $3,361 to $3,527 over the prior year, representing a +4.5%.

We expect a modest rate increase to the fund. This should be announced in March 2010 by the TRS ActiveCare Board of Directors.

Code Red Report – The Critical Condition of Health Care in Texas

Saturday, December 12th, 2009

Tahiti-Dancers

The report of the Task Force on Access to Health Care in Texas: Challenges of the Uninsured and Underinsured was issued April 17, 2006. The Task Force represented a nonpartisan group sponsored by all 10 of the major academic health institutions in Texas, as well as representatives from large and small employers, hospitals, health policy experts and community and business leaders. This Task Force was comprised of some really smart people, much smarter than most of us earthlings.

The Task Force collected data, identified and assessed the magnitute of the problem of the uninsured in Texas, and made recommendations for consideration by policymakers (career politicians).

Here are their findings: A lot of folks in Texas are unhealthy and uninsured.  Health insurance is costly.

Their recommendations: Garner more federal monies (tax), implement a 3% punishment fee  (tax) to all hospitals and surgical centers, give preference in awarding government contracts to those contractors who show proof of health insurance, adopt punishment (tax) policies that “encourage” employers to provide health insurance for their employees, adopt a “share subsidy” (tax) for small employers, mandate 60 minutes a day for exercise for Texas public school children, expand  (taxes) the School Breakfast Program, increase “investment” (tax) in the education and training of health professionals, adequately invest (more taxes) in public health programs, among numerous other recommendations along the same lines, i.e, “Throw Money At The Problem And Everything Will Be Just Fine.” Taxes solves problems” seems to be the universal answer these days.

We read this Code Red Report three times. Surely we were missing something we thought. Unable to reconcile this report with our inner sense of values instilled in us by members of America’s Greatest Generation (our parents), we appointed Molly Mulebriar to head our own Task Force to study the issues addressed in the Code Red Report. Here are our findings:

Our Findings: A lot of folks in Texas are unhealthy and uninsured. Health insurance is costly.

Our Recommendations: No need to inform Texans that many of them are unhealthy and uninsured and health insurance is costly – they already have figured that out on their own. No need to  recommend that they do someting about it on their own – they are generally smart enough to have figured that out too. For example, they know that when they visit the grocery store, they should buy “good stuff” instead of the “bad stuff.”  And they know that If you really want health insurance, you can buy it, guaranteed in Texas, if you are willing to give up your cell phone, Saturday nights out on the town, and those expensive vacations to Tahiti.

If the goverment wants everyone to have health insurance, why dont they mandate that for everyone who shows proof of health insurance, the government will pay for their cell phone, Saturday nights out on the town, and at least one annual vacation to Tahiti – after all, we are all entitled to that arn’t we?

A free and unfettered market solves problems – government intervention generally exaserbates them

Molly Mulebriar summed up the problem by saying “If costs are high, offer to pay less and find someone who will accept it. This is called  a ‘Free Market Economy’ which has worked so well for the past 200+ years in this country.”  

ist2_6107897-patriotic-american

Molly Mulebriar – American Hero

Code Red Report here:  code_red_synopsis