We're eight days from the beginning of the Obama administration and the promise of affordable health insurance for everyone. But a new report from the nonprofit consumer group Families USA highlights how difficult it will be to keep that promise.
In a previous half-hearted reform attempt more than 20 years ago, Congress passed a law allowing employees to stay on their employers' health plans for up to 18 months after leaving the job, or being laid off. That was supposed to give the unemployed time to find a new job, and, with it, a new health insurance plan. The provision is known as COBRA, after the name of the bill (the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act).
As you might expect of a Reagan-era health reform, the proposal said nothing about the cost of such plans.