NU Online News Service, April 24, 2:26 p.m. — Washington
A top Health Insurance Association of America executive says private health insurers want to be part of any new Medicare prescription drug benefit, but only if the program is broad-based and not prone to adverse selection.
Donald Young, president of the Washington-based group, said today at a press briefing that proposals to create a drug-only insurance plan would not work, because only those with high drug costs would purchase the plan, leading to adverse selection and excessive costs.
“If private insurers are to play a role in the delivey of a Medicare prescription drug benefit, it cannot be under the structure of a drug-only insurance product that results in adverse selection and high premiums that would not be attractive to the great majority of seniors,” Young said.
Young’s comments came as Congress and the White House continued efforts to develop a Medicare prescription drug benefit.
Among the proposals on the table is one that would allow private health plans and insurers to arrange and deliver Medicare benefits.