Groups plan protest at AHIP meeting

If you've got a bone to pick with the health plan industry, you aren't the only one. A collection of consumer advocacy groups have set plans to hold protests at the upcoming AHIP convention, arguing that the industry isn't offering real choices.

The partners, who include labor union organizations, anti-poverty groups and single-payer advocates, intend to make their case for instituting a competitive public health plan instead. They're building their case, in part, on a report released by Health Care for America Now! on health plan competition, which suggests that competition has been all but eliminated in many U.S. markets.

The report concluded that in 12 of 43 states surveyed, one health plan controls at least two-thirds of the market, and in another 12 states, one plan holds 50 percent or more of the market. Meanwhile, in 39 states, two plans have 50 percent or more of the healthcare market, HCAN says.

The groups say they're not against the existence of private health plans, but that they believe private health plans should compete with public plans, a set-up they say would encourage commercial plans to compete by improving enrollees' health.

To learn more about this effort:
- read this Health Leaders Media piece

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