US says 129 million people have health woes

Jan 18, 2011

As many as 129 million people in the United States, or almost half of those under 65, have a pre-existing condition that could bar them from health insurance, a government report said Tuesday.

The report was issued by the Department of Health and Human Services just as lawmakers were poised to debate a Republican-backed bill that aims to repeal President Barack Obama's healthcare reform law, signed last year.

Between 50 to 129 million Americans under 65 have a condition, such as asthma, , arthritis or cancer, which could be considered a pre-existing condition by companies, the report said.

More specifically, the study said 25 million people under 65 with a pre-existing condition are currently not insured.

Obama's law, which is being enacted in stages and comes fully into force in 2014, would make it illegal for to discriminate against people by denying coverage to those with health problems.

"The Act is stopping insurance companies from discriminating against Americans with pre-existing conditions and is giving us all more freedom and control over our health care decisions," said HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.

"The new law is already helping to free Americans from the fear that an insurer will drop, limit or cap their coverage when they need it most," she said.

The study also noted that "15 to 30 percent of people under age 65 in perfectly good health today are likely to develop a pre-existing condition over the next eight years."

Critics of Obama's package dismissed the report as pure politicking.

"I just don't believe the Department of Health and Human services, which is putting out left-wing propaganda," Republican and former House speaker Newt Gingrich told ABC news.

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User comments : 4

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2 / 5 (4) Jan 18, 2011
What a fraudulent joke.

The most wild-eyed estimates are that 40 million people do not have health insurance at any given time, and that's if you include Insufficiently Documented Future Democrat Voters (1/3), people, mostly young, who choose not to buy insurance because they're healthy (1/3) and those temporarily out of work (1/3). So how do we get to alarmism about how health insurance companies have so much premium revenue that they're willing to throw many tens of millions more off their rolls? Why not just throw all 310 million off, they'd never have to pay another claim, and their profits would go through the roof, right? (I would not doubt for one second that those lefties here, even the ones who don't get furious when forced to admit it, have no more a sophisticated knowledge of how business and profits and the evil capitalist system works than that.)

You can't even make some of this stuff up. These numbers are so grossly inflated as to be preposterous. Progs at work.
1 / 5 (1) Jan 18, 2011
I note that Newt is not backing up the science with actual evidence of any kind ~ why does the far right abandon facts in favour of emotionally driven imagination??
1 / 5 (1) Jan 18, 2011
geokstr says: "people, mostly young, who choose not to buy insurance because they're healthy"

But if they get sick, under the Republican's plan, they'll have a pre-existing condition and so won't be able to get insurance, will they...
not rated yet Jan 20, 2011
I don't really care for Newt but he is spot on with this quote.........

"I just don't believe the Department of Health and Human services, which is putting out left-wing propaganda,"

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