I was listening to the news this morning, and heard that the public option was defeated in the Senate Finance Committee, and discussion about insurance co-ops is the big deal now. This might seem encouraging to people at first...that there would still be an option to an expensive private insurance plan. But in reality there isn't and there won't be.
Insurance cooperatives have been around for years, and are in use by our elected officials as well. The big advantage of using them is that typically they present better quality of care options, and have a better satisfaction track-record than does the private insurance market. But cooperatives DO NOT lower the cost of insurance. In fact many are quite expensive.
This means that though rising costs of insurance and health care is THE biggest issue on the table, the legislation being presented does little or nothing to help this problem. Of course we'll still have to wait and see how the plans are reconciled together, but it seems to me that the things being discussed just barely meet President Obama's requirements and then will largely keep things exactly the same as they are today. Except, that should I have that pre-existing condition or lose my job, I can still get insurance I can't afford, and if I don't purchase the insurance I can't afford, I'll additionally be penalized for not getting it. Great, eh?
10 Myths About U.S. Health Care Reform Proposals
That article above discusses the myths being talked about with the health care proposals. They are really well addressed. The only one in question is #2: "The Public Plan is Dead; Long Live the Public Plan", as I think that co-op's possible effectiveness is being misrepresented, and ultimately people will be driven back to private plans (which the private insurers gotta love).
Sen. Conrad's Heath Insurance Co-Ops Won't Provide Affordable Care And Could Be Used By The Insurance Industry Against Americans, Says Consumer Watchdog