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Feb-24-2010 23:24printcomments

Schrader Votes to Strip Anti-Trust Exemption from Health Insurance Companies

Only two industries have ever been exempted from anti-trust laws, the health insurance industry and Major League Baseball.

Congressman Kurt Schrader
Congressman Kurt Schrader
Courtesy: Wikipedia

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) - Congressman Kurt Schrader (D-OR) today joined a majority of his colleagues in the United States House of Representatives in voting to strip healthcare insurance companies of their exemption from anti-trust bylaws and requiring them to adhere to the same laws as other companies. The bill passed with an overwhelming bi-partisan majority.

“Oregonians have already had their health insurance premiums go up this year and they cannot afford for them to continue rising,” said Schrader.

“The health insurance industry needs to be subject to the same anti-trust laws as other companies in order to increase competition and drive down costs. Only then will Oregonians have the ability to receive the coverage they need at a price they can afford.”

Some health insurance premiums have increased by as much as 26% in Oregon since the beginning of 2009. This is an increase most Oregonians cannot afford when they are facing an 11.5% unemployment rate.

H.R. 4626, the Health Insurance Industry Fair Competition Act, removes the anti-trust law exemption that has benefited the health insurance industry for more than six decades.

Over 94% of insurance markets are concentrated with few providers, resulting in consumers having limited to no choice in selecting a plan that meets their coverage needs.

Only two industries have ever been exempted from anti-trust laws, the health insurance industry and Major League Baseball.

Subjecting the health insurance industry to anti-trust laws will hold them responsible for price “fixing” and attempts to build a monopoly, which is strictly prohibited for all other industries. The bill now heads to the U.S. Senate for consideration.

Source: Congressman Kurt Schrader, Oregon’s 5th Congressional District

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douglas benson February 25, 2010 7:26 am (Pacific time)

Good job Kurt ! The Dems still have the majority start passing legislation without the Rep. . Force them to read from the phone book ect. put them on national TV and say here is the Rep at work doing the peoples business NOT . Time to take off the gloves boys this is politics not sunday school .

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