Monday, May 19, 2008

NY Legislators Find HMOs Deny Medicine To Patients

What was already obvious to thousands, if not millions of HMO patients was made clear to New York's elected officials. Insurance companies deny service and medication to their paying clients is the status quo, yet with lax oversight by the Bush Administration and their approval of the practice, nothing has been done to help regular people. Hopefully the study these officials commissioned will make things go in the right direction.

From NY1:

State Senators Jeff Klein, Tom Duane and John Sabini analyzed 19 of New York's major HMOs, and found that 14 of them deny or restrict access to medications which do not have a generic equivalent.

They also said many of those drugs are used to treat conditions that affect higher percentages of blacks and Hispanics as compared to whites, such as heart disease and diabetes.

"The most expensive drugs for the most critical of illnesses are made prohibitively expensive on co-pays and this is just another example on how hard it is to fight to ensure people -- no matter what they come from, no matter what language they speak, no matter what they look like -- have the same access to healthcare as everyone else," said Sabini.

It is a terrible system where Big Pharma and the HMO industry gets to profit from each other's policies while people who desperately need medication are those that suffer the most. Perhaps the executives at Blue Cross, Pfizer, etc like to see people in pain and add to their suffering. They already have fistfulls of money, do they really want that much more? Or is it, like the article suggest, something against minorities?