Lawmakers Should Consider Health Mandate
"California policymakers would do well to embrace two critical elements" of the Massachusetts health insurance law: a "hybrid approach" that requires all residents to purchase insurance and subsidizes insurance for low-income residents, and affordable health care coverage, Bruce Bodaken, president and CEO of Blue Shield of California, writes in a Los Angeles Times opinion piece.
Bodaken continues, "California should note that while comprehensive benefits for all would be ideal, compromises to maintain affordability must be part of any viable plan."
Requiring residents to obtain health care coverage "will be much tougher" in California because the state "has many more uninsured residents, and a structural budget deficit," according to Bodaken. However, "we must succeed" before "an initiative war ... lock[s] us into a system even worse than the one we have today," Bodaken writes (Bodaken, Los Angeles Times, 4/29).