Saturday, December 5, 2009

I *heart* insurance companies

(who says insurance companies don't have a heart?)

Sometimes big corporations get a bad rap. But hey, this is the season of love and peace. I think we should give them a break! Surely they have good reasons for doing what they do.

So, in the spirit of love and peace, I looked up the mission statements for the country's 3 largest health insurance companies.

Wow. Golly gee. I had no idea they were so compassionate and idealistic.

Brought a little tear to my eye.

Here are the 3 mission statements. Each one is followed by an actual news story that demonstrates just exactly how compassionate and idealistic these companies are.

Gigantic Insurance Company # 1: UnitedHealth
2008 profits: $2.997 billion (this was, amazingly, a 36% DROP from 2007)
(Link to profit information)

Heart-warming mission statement:
"Our mission is to help people live healthier lives. We seek to enhance the performance of the health system and improve the overall health and well-being of the people we serve and their communities."

News story:
January 16, 2009
UnitedHealth Settles Lawsuit Over Insurance Claims

Investigators found that UnitedHealth subsidiary Ingenix was providing faulty data which helped the giant insurer under-pay medical claims, thus shifting costs unfairly to the customers. UnitedHealth admitted no wrongdoing but agreed to pay $350 million.

($350 million? Heck, they have more than that stuffed between the couch cushions in the employee lunch room.)

Gigantic Insurance Company # 2: WellPoint
2008 profits: $2.490 billion

Heart-warming mission statement:
"To improve the lives of the people we serve and the health of our communities."

News story:
April, 2009
Biggest Health Insurer Admits: We Put Profits Before People

WellPoint CEO Angela Brady told investors during a conference call: "We will not sacrifice profitability for membership."

(In other words, money counts. People don't. Plus, you guys appear to have stolen UnitedHealth's mission statement. Come on, you could at least make up your own crap.)

Gigantic Insurance Company # 3: Aetna
2008 profits: $1.384 billion

Mission statement:
"We help people achieve health and financial security by providing easy access to cost-effective, high-quality health care"

News story:
December 4, 2009
Aetna Forcing 600,000-Plus To Lose Coverage In Effort To Raise Profits

Just in time for the holidays, Aetna has announced that it will be raising rates in 2010. Because of the higher rates, the company expects to lose between 600,000 and 650,000 customers. Chairman and CEO Ron Williams explained that the price hikes instituted in 2009 simply were not high enough. "The pricing we put in place for 2009 turned out to not really be what we needed to achieve the results and margins that we had historically been delivering," he said.

(Excuse me Ron, but I'm a little confused. Where is the "financial security" for the 600,000 people who can no longer afford your "cost-effective health care"?)

You really have to hand it to these benevolent, kindly health insurance companies. They obviously have someone's best interests at heart.

Can you guess whose?



  1. Aw, now I have this warm, fuzzy feeling. Of course, warm and fuzzy aren't covered by my current policy!

  2. >>MsBurb shaking her head and chuckling quietly to herself<<


  3. all insurance companies are for profits only. believing anything else then i have a bridge that goes to nowhere i'd like to sell you.