WASHINGTON (AP) -- For the first time, the health insurance industry is offering to curb its controversial practice of charging higher premiums to sick people.
The offer, in a letter the industry to key senators Tuesday, is a potentially significant shift in the debate over reforming the nation's health care system to curb costs and cover an estimated 48 million uninsured people.
In the letter, America's Health Insurance Plans and the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association say they are willing to "phase out the practice of varying premiums based on health status in the individual market" if all Americans are required to get coverage.
Insurers are trying to head off creation of a government insurance plan that would compete with them.
(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
To comment, the following rules must be followed:
Comments may be monitored for inappropriate content, but the station is under no legal obligation to do so.
If you believe a comment violates the above rules, please use the Flagging Tool to alert a Moderator.
Flagging does not guarantee removal.
Multiple violations may result in account suspension.
Decisions to suspend or unsuspend accounts are made by Station Moderators.
Links require admin approval before posting.
Questions may be sent to email@example.com. Please provide detailed information.
Viewers with disabilities can get assistance accessing this station's FCC Public Inspection File by contacting the station with the information listed below. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, 888-835-5322 (TTY), or firstname.lastname@example.org.