Carey,The reply, by "Carey Goldberg, former Boston bureau chief of The New York Times, and Rachel Zimmerman, former health and medicine reporter for The Wall Street Journal" was:
I see you’ve written several articles about the new health insurance laws, etc. The company I work for has [a major national insurer]. Last year we received a $25 discount bi-weekly if we filled out a health questionnaire, which of course everyone felt compelled to do as that would be a savings of $650 per year. Most people I spoke to felt uneasy doing it, as they felt it would lead to other invasive practices. Well, sure enough, this year, if you DON’T smoke cigarettes you get $10 off bi-weekly, but to get the additional $25 not only do you have to fill out a questionnaire, but everyone employed [here] (and taking the health insurance) has to have a screening which involves:
1. Waistline measurement
2. Blood pressure measurement
3. Blood draw to test for glucose, HDL and triglyceride levels.
If you do not pass these tests, you will lose your $25 if these are not brought down to an acceptable level by August (when we will be tested again).
Needless to say, this really shook a lot of people up, as it is so invasive, and is this even legal?
Would love to hear your thoughts on this.
"Let’s cut to the chase. Yes, it’s legal. ... Here’s the bottom line: Under federal law, your employer can vary your health insurance premium by up to 20% based on a “health factor;” that goes up to 30% as of 2014 and the government could eventually raise it as high as 50%."This isn't about health, it's about profit. It's about drawing people into a system and having them pay for overpriced products and services. It's a very complex and convoluted system that shields this motive. Former insiders such as Wendell Potter have written extensively about it.