Might be a good follow-up question the next time CNN promotes the Tea Party under the guise of hosting a debate:
At CNN’s Tea Party-indulging debate on Monday, Ron Paul, a medical doctor, faced a pointed line of questioning from Wolf Blitzer regarding the case of an uninsured young man who suddenly found himself in dire need of intensive health care. Should the state pay his bills? Paul responded, “That’s what freedom is all about: taking your own risks. This whole idea that you have to take care of everybody—
He never quite finished that point, letting the audience’s loud applause finish it for him. So Blitzer pressed on, asking if he meant that “society should just let him die,” which earned a chilling round of approving hoots from the crowd..
As it turns out, Paul was not speaking purely in hypotheticals. Back in 2008, Kent Snyder — Paul’s former campaign chairman — died of complications from pneumonia. Like the man in Blitzer’s example, the 49-year-old Snyder (pictured) was relatively young and seemingly healthy* when the illness struck. He was also uninsured. When he died on June 26, 2008, two weeks after Paul withdrew his first bid for the presidency, his hospital costs amounted to $400,000. The bill was handed to Snyder’s surviving mother (pictured, left), who was incapable of paying.
The Kansas City Star quoted his sister at the time as saying that a “a pre-existing condition made the premiums too expensive.”
Since Dr. Paul is apparently some kind of Dickensian miser who is too cheap to provide affordable health insurance to the people who slave away on his behalf, I turned to Obamacare to see how Mr. Snyder might have fared. The piece says he was born in Kansas, so I put him there, and just filled in the personal information that is available (age, pre-existing condition):
To qualify for coverage:
• You must be a citizen or national of the United States or residing in the United States legally.
• You must have been uninsured for at least the last six months before you apply.
• You must have a pre-existing condition or have been denied coverage because of your health condition.
The Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan will cover a broad range of health benefits, including primary and specialty care, hospital care, and prescription drugs. All covered benefits are available for you, even if it’s to treat a pre-existing condition.
Premium: non smoker rates range from $349 to $385
Out of Pocket Limit: $5,950
h/t El Cid