Letters to editor: April 13
Published 12:00 am Thursday, April 13, 2023
Thanks to kind strangers for help
On April 4, when I got out of bed, I was very dizzy, so I decided to go to the emergency room at the VA. When I got out of my truck in the parking lot, I saw a woman who was dressed like she worked there. I asked her if she was going in to the emergency room, and she asked me what was wrong. I told her I was very dizzy. She said, “Well, I will walk with you.”
As we were going down the walkway, we met a man who asked what was wrong. The woman told him I was dizzy. He started running, then came back with a wheelchair and wheeled me into the emergency room. He stayed there with me until I was taken care of.
I do not have either of their names, so this is my way of saying thank you to the people that cared.
— Howard Carter
Blue Cross Blue Shield should be held accountable
The largest insurance company in North Carolina, Blue Cross Blue Shield, is pushing a bill through the N.C. General Assembly that would allow it to bypass state laws that protect all North Carolinians from corporate interests.
HB346 and SB 296 would potentially stifle competition in the health insurance market, reduce choices for consumers and threaten to raise expensive premiums and costs.
Why is BCBSNC, a nonprofit company, pushing these bills? Because it wants to convert to a for-profit company and is trying to circumvent NC law that says if a company converts its structure from a nonprofit to for profit, the full value of the nonprofit must be placed into a charitable foundation that promotes the health of all North Carolinians. BCBSNC’s re-structuring plan would go around this law and set up a parent “nonprofit holding company” that would not be a regulated insurance company. An unregulated company would be free to invest assets out of state or increase executive pay. BCBSNC is hardly a struggling company with assets over $10 billion that controls 80% of the individual and group market in NC. In 2021, its top 10 executives received combined compensation over $15 million.
What is the real motivation behind this restructure scheme and this legislation BCBSNC is pushing? Many BCBSNC’s 4.3 million policyholders are already paying high premiums or out-of-pocket costs. This restricting move could lead to even higher premiums and co-pays, as well as diminished quality of care and services. Policyholders deserve better!
— Eileen Hanson-Kelly