Soundview Executive Book Summaries
SOUNDVIEW EXECUTIVE BOOK SUMMARIES – DECEMBER – 2005
Why We Like This Book: “The New Health Insurance Solution explains in layman’s terms how readers can save money, and teaches them the most important aspects of the economics of health insurance.”
The New Health Insurance Solution, By Paul Zane Pilzer – How To Get Cheaper, Better Coverage, Without A Traditional Plan
By Paul Zane Pilzer
World renowned economist and former White House adviser Paul Zane Pilzer writes that Americans can now get health insurance for themselves at a lower price than they are paying through their company plans. In The New Health Insurance Solution, Pilzer explains, “It is now possible to get better, cheaper, safer insurance than you are getting from your employer, save thousands of dollars each year, and protect you, your family, or your business from the greatest threat to your financial future — our nation’s broken employer-based health insurance system.”
According to Pilzer, the health insurance revolution has begun. He explains that in the last two years, new legislation and regulations have dramatically changed the landscape for health insurance. These changes now allow most Americans to buy their own health insurance that is better and cheaper than their employer’s insurance. The purpose of his book, Pilzer writes, is to show readers how to take advantage of these changes.
Pilzer explains that individual/family health insurance policies are better for most people because they are independent of an employer, so you don’t lose your health insurance if you lose your job. He writes that losing job-related health insurance is how up to 1 million Americans end up in medical bankruptcy each year. Pilzer also explains that an individual/family health insurance policy costs about half the price of an employer-sponsored group plan for similar coverage.
In addition, Pilzer writes, employers are now able to offer each one of their employees his or her own permanent individual/family policy, and reimburse each employee tax-free for the cost of his or her monthly premium, “instead of offering a very expensive one-size-fits-all group policy.”
Today, health care costs consume almost one-sixth of America’s economy, Pilzer explains, “and, during your lifetime, medical and health insurance costs are likely to be your largest or second largest expense after housing. That’s if you’re lucky enough to have health insurance.” He adds that even if you have health insurance, your traditional employer-sponsored plan might be the biggest threat to your financial future.
Health insurance is also a giant problem for employers as well, Pilzer explains. General Motors, he points out, “is in serious trouble because health insurance adds $1,550 to the cost of every car it sells. The cost of health benefits now exceeds profits for most of the Fortune 500.” He adds that many small businesses fail each year because they cannot afford to pay the premiums for their group health insurance plan, which in turn hurts American competitiveness in the world marketplace.
Never Go Without
No one should ever go without health insurance, Pilzer writes, and “there are health insurance options for every American.” He explains that in most cases, anyone can get good health insurance today for an individual or family for $150 to $300 per month.
To help readers obtain individual/family health insurance, Pelzer provides much advice and many tips for finding the right policy. One tip he offers is to be careful when shopping online for health insurance, “and watch the fine print.” He adds, “A good online insurance Web site will not ask you for your name or contact information until you have seen quotes and are ready to choose a policy.”
Throughout The New Health Insurance Solution, Pilzer describes the legal rights people have to health insurance when they lose or change their jobs; how they can buy their own low-cost, high-quality health insurance policy; and the best options for employees with a good company plan. He also details the benefits of Health Savings Accounts and how they allow Americans to save hundreds of thousands of dollars, tax-free, for their “future medical expenses or retirement — while financially reforming the entire U.S. health care system.”
Why We Like This Book
The New Health Insurance Solution explains in layman’s terms how readers can save money, and teaches them the most important aspects of the economics of health insurance. By breaking down his ideas and advice into simple concepts, and spelling them out in easily understood charts, Pilzer provides readers with highly actionable advice that can have a dramatic impact on their wallets and lives. Copyright (c) 2005