"In a time of universal deceit telling the truth is a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

Posts Tagged ‘Health Insurance’

Landmark Study Finds 93 Percent Of Unborn Babies Contaminated With Monsanto’s Genetically Modified ‘Food’ BT Toxin

In Uncategorized on May 27, 2011 at 1:38 pm

Fragile: It is not known what effect the toxins have on the unborn fetuses

Oldspeak:“Surprise, surprise despite repeated assurances to the contrary GM ‘Food’ is not the same as naturally grown food. And it passes toxins to the blood of most people who eat it. It’s too bad these studies weren’t done before much of the world’s food supply was contaminated with this frankenfood. We are all subjects in a vast uncontrolled experiment, and this one is yielding some tragic findings. In addition to carrying a pathogen that causes infertility in plants, animals and humans, GM crops have been shown to be causally related to the significant rises in food allergies, diabetes, obesity, autism,  immune system dysfunction, asthma, cancer and heart disease, low birth-weight babies, and infant mortality. Why are we being fed poisons that have been shown to have numerous negative health effects? We have no idea what the long term effects will be of the fundamental changing of our food supply. But I’ll bet it ain’t none too good. No comment on this in corporate american media.

By Ethan A. Huff @ Natural News:

A landmark new study out of Canada exposes yet another lie propagated by the biotechnology industry, this time blowing a hole in the false claim that a certain genetic pesticide used in the cultivation of genetically-modified (GM) crops does not end up in the human body upon consumption. Researchers from the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Sherbrooke Hospital Centre in Quebec, Can., have proven that Bt toxin, which is used in GM corn and other crops, definitively makes its way into the blood supply, contrary to what Big Bio claims — and this toxin was found in the bloodstreams of 93 percent of pregnant women tested.

Published in the journal Reproductive Toxicology, the study explains that Bt toxin enters the body not only through direct consumption of GMOs, but also from consumption of meat, milk and eggs from animals whose feed contains GMOs. Among all women tested, 80 percent of the pregnant group tested positive for Bt toxin in their babies’ umbilical cords, and 69 percent of non-pregnant women tested positive for Bt toxin.

The only reason many countries even approved GM crops in the first place was because they were told that GM crops were no different than conventional crops. The biotechnology industry has purported for years that the alterations and chemicals used in GM crop cultivation pose no risk whatsoever to human health, and that any GM substances that remain in food are broken down in the digestive system. Now that it has been revealed that such claims are complete fabrications, many groups are urging governments to pull GMOs from their food supplies.

“This research is a major surprise as it shows that the Bt proteins have survived the human digestive system and passed into the blood supply — something that regulators said could not happen,” said Pete Riley from GM Freeze, an alliance of organizations united against GMOs. “Regulators need to urgently reassess their opinions, and the EU should use the safeguard clauses in the regulations to prevent any further GM Bt crops being cultivated or imported for animal feed or food until the potential health implications have been fully evaluated.”

Most of the studies that have been used to validate the safety of GMOs have been conducted by the companies that created them in the first place, so they are hardly a credible source for reliable safety data. Governments in North and South America, as well as throughout Europe, have essentially welcomed GMOs into the food supply based on flimsy reassurances rather than sound science.

Related Stories:

Monsanto Shifts ALL Liability to Farmers For Losses, Injury, Damages from Monsanto Seeds

 GM food toxins found in the blood of 93% of unborn babies

Half A Million Americans Denied Health Coverage For “Pre-Existing Conditions”, Like Pregnancy

In Uncategorized on October 14, 2010 at 9:26 am

Oldspeak:”Still not quite sure why Obama and the Democrats agreed to allow one the the most popular provisions of their “Health Care Reform” bill to not take effect until 2014, when they are are in dire need of “wins” to show the American people they instituted positive change. In the meantime Health Insurers are denying insurance claims at nearly DOUBLE THE RATE they were a few years ago… 😐 Health Insurers are clearing the decks, cutting as many “costs” and gobbling up as much profit as possible before the party is over. At the expense of  millions of Americans in need of heath care.”

From The Financial Times:

The four largest health insurance companies in the US denied coverage to more than half a million individuals because of their pre-existing conditions from 2007 to 2009, according to a congressional investigation.

On average, the four companies – Aetna Humana UnitedHealth Group andWellPoint – denied one out of seven applicants’ coverage based on conditions such as pregnancy, angina, diabetes and heart disease.

The investigation found that the number of people who were denied coverage increased about 49 per cent from 2007 to 2009. In that period, the groups refused to pay 212,800 claims for individuals who were already insured based on their previous medical conditions.

New revelations about the extent of denials based on pre-existing conditions comes at a crucial time for Democratic lawmakers.

Many of them have come under pressure in the lead up to the November mid-term elections because of their support for President Barack Obama’s healthcare reform law, which was passed by Democrats in Congress in March.

Polls show that roughly 50 per cent of voters disapprove of the wide-ranging new law.

But one of the most universally popular provisions – which will not take effect until 2014 – makes it illegal for insurance groups to deny an individual coverage based on a person’s health status or pre-existing condition.

Democrats have argued that the provision is economically feasible because the new law also includes a mandate forcing every individual to be covered, one of the least popular aspects of the bill.

Republican candidates for Congress have vowed to “repeal and replace” the healthcare law, but keep the new provision on pre-existing conditions. They have not, however, explained how they would extend coverage to those individuals without a broader mandate.

The congressional investigation by Democrats on the House energy and commerce committee was initiated shortly before the landmark vote on healthcare reform, when Congressman Henry Waxman, chairman of the committee, asked each of the companies for extensive information about their denial policies.

Each of the companies complied with the request. The congressional probe found that each company saw its policy on pre-existing conditions as a key area of growth.

For example, internal documents by a company that was not identified by the committee showed that executives were considering practices such as denying payments for drugs related to pre-existing conditions and linking additional claims to pre-existing condition exclusions as ways to limit the amount of money the company had to pay for claims.

Although the committee found that a total of 651,000 individuals were denied insurance coverage in the individual market between 2007 and 2009, investigators said the number was likely “significantly higher” because the figure did not include individuals who were discouraged from applying for coverage by insurance agents.

The four companies covered about 2.8m people in the individual market in 2009. In some cases, the denials were issued without review.

A memo circulated by one unidentified company in 2006 listed 14 medical categories that did not require review, including: any woman who was pregnant or had been treated for infertility within five years.

UnitedHealth Profit Jumps 31% as Medicare/Medicaid Enrollments Grow

In Uncategorized on July 21, 2010 at 9:21 am

Oldspeak:” ‘If the consumers are tapped out and not getting as many elected procedures and pushing off care, that’s ultimately better for UnitedHealth, As long as the job market and consumer confidence remain soft, hospital volumes and physician visits are likely to remain soft as well.’ Translation: ‘We profit either way, but it’s better for us if the economy is weak, consumers are broke,  jobless,  have less access to doctors and have to go on Medicare/Medicaid. It keeps our costs down.’ Profit is Paramout.”

From Alex Nussbaum @ Bloomberg News:

UnitedHealth Group Inc., the biggest U.S. health insurer by sales, raised its full-year profit forecast after increased enrollments and lower-than-projected medical costs lifted second-quarter earnings 30 percent.

The insurer forecast 2010 profit of $3.40 to $3.60 a share compared with a previous projection of $3.15 to $3.35, citing growth in sales or membership for all business units. Net income rose to $1.12 billion, or 99 cents a share, for the quarter, from $859 million, or 73 cents, a year earlier, the company said today. The earnings and forecast topped estimates.

Chief Executive Officer Stephen Hemsley boosted enrollment in Medicare Advantage, the U.S.-backed program for the elderly. Weakness in the economic recovery in the U.S. also helped, by keeping people away from doctors and hospitals, said Jason Gurda, a Leerink Swann & Co. analyst in New York. UnitedHealth did better than expected for commercial enrollment, taking business from rival insurers, he said.

“If the consumers are tapped out and not getting as many elected procedures and pushing off care, that’s ultimately better for UnitedHealth,” Gurda said in a telephone interview. “As long as the job market and consumer confidence remain soft, hospital volumes and physician visits are likely to remain soft as well.”

Forecast Raised

The company, based in Minnetonka, Minnesota, raised its 2010 revenue forecast by $1 billion, to $93 billion. Sixteen analysts surveyed by Bloomberg had estimated $92.2 billion, on average, and $3.32 a share in annual earnings.

UnitedHealth gained 1 cent to $30.83 at 4 p.m. in New York Stock Exchange composite trading. The company’s shares climbed 24 percent in the past 12 months.

Investors may worry that the earnings results will prompt government to impose stricter rules on the industry, said Matthew Borsch, a Goldman Sachs Group Inc. analyst in New York, in a note to clients today.

The health-care law passed in March requires insurers to spend at least 80 percent of the premiums they collect on members’ medical care and gives states more money to scrutinize “unreasonable” rate increases. State and federal regulators are writing regulations to implement those provisions, Borsch said.

“With criticism of the industry still intense and reform regulations not finalized, market reaction may be mixed” to UnitedHealth’s numbers, he said.

Sales Increase

Second-quarter revenue rose 7.4 percent to $23.3 billion, the company said. That included increased sales in UnitedHealth’s Prescription Solutions unit, which manages drug- benefits for employers, and Ingenix, which analyzes health costs to hospitals, employers and insurance companies.

The insurer sees health-services businesses as ripe for growth under the new legislation because the overhaul puts a premium on businesses that figure out ways to contain medical costs, Hemsley said on a conference call with analysts today. UnitedHealth announced the creation of a unit to invest in such programs, including startups outside the company.

“Health-care reform has put a new kind of dynamic into the marketplace around affordability and the need to modernize and simplify” medical care, Hemsley said. “We’re pretty positive as to what the prospects could be.”

Enrollment in UnitedHealth’s medical-benefit plans increased to 32.5 million, from 32.1 million. Membership in Medicare Advantage policies climbed 17 percent while Medicaid enrollment rose 14 percent, the company said. Medicaid is a federal and state program for the poor.

UnitedHealth said it spent 81.5 percent of the premiums it collected for the quarter on medical care, down from 83.6 percent a year earlier.