The Cost of Health Insurance: Women & Men

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Sarah O’Keefe, who runs a small business, left a comment on my post about health insurance.

I’d like to see a public option because I think that it will force insurers to improve their offerings. Please do not get me started on the fact that insuring women is twice as expensive as insuring men. A rule banning this underwriting approach would be a nice start.

Another writer, class factotum, responds.

Actually, women cost more during their child-bearing years (especially now that in-vitro and other infertility treatments, which have very low success rates and are very expensive, are required to be covered in some states) and men cost more later (as they get older and have heart attacks, etc).

Does anyone have any insight on how policies for small businesses are underwritten, the pricing differentials for women and men, or why we still ask employers to manage this nonsense instead of finding a better way to offer coverage?

Let’s just give small businesses another reason to fail: the overwhelming administrative burden of health insurance.

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