The Hutchinson News from Hutchinson, Kansas on September 15, 1971 · Page 73
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The Hutchinson News from Hutchinson, Kansas · Page 73

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Hutchinson, Kansas
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Wednesday, September 15, 1971
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Page 73
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Health, Auto Insurance Under Fire by Consumers Editor's note: Customer dissatisfaction is fueling a bipartisan drive in congress to force changes on the insurance industry. In the following article, the first of two, a member of the AP Special Assignment Team reports on the key areas of consumer concern. Related Story Page 16. healthcare plan, told a Senate subcommittee: "This administration is proposing that the insurance industry be regulated. We shall see to it that citizens have better and cheaper coverage through competition among By DONALD M. ROTHBERG Associated Press Writer, WASHINGTON (AP) - When disaster strikes their homes, businesses, automobiles and bodies, Americans look to the multibillion-dollar insurance industry for help. But a growing number of people are complaining that when they need it most, the industry isn't there. Health and auto insurance turned) up in a poll commissioned by the White House as the top two concerns among American consumers. Two Conclusions The findings supported the conclusion of two government studies: A Department of Transporta tion analysis of auto insurance that reported "the existing system ill serves the accident vie tim, the insuring public and society." And, an administration white paper that criticized private health insurance, saying not enough people have it and those who do pay too much for too little. ! Congress is considering series of bills to alter if not re form parts of the mammoth in dustry, which now operates vir tually free of federal regu lation. Two major plans for chang ing the health and auto insur ance systems originated with the Nixon administration. Con gressional Democrats have pu forth alternate plans, most o them calling for more drastk changes. Ease The Bite The change most wanted bj consumers is one that will ease the bite insurance now take out of their incomes. Average premiums for life, health, and auto insurance, plus Social Security and workmen's compensation payments, often run at least $1,000 a year. For low-income residents of inner-city neighborhoods, auto insurance alone can cost that much. For. Americans on any income level who have health insurance, premiums have been rising steadily in a losing effort to keep pace with soaring medical costs. Health Secretary Elliot L. Richardson, testifying in support of the administration's Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, D- rtass., sponsor of a bill to reate a government-operated nd financed national health-insurance system, called health ;are "the fastest growing fail- .arners. Ing business in the nation, a $70- billion industry that fails to meet the needs of our people." Thus there agreement that is bipartisan the health-insurance industry is ailing. What are the symptoms? —Government statistics show nearly 19 per cent of the population under age 65, or about 35 million Americans, has no hospitalization insurance; 21 per cent isn't covered for surgery; 30 per cent for doctor visits while in a hospital; 57 per cent 'or doctor bills from office vis-' its or house calls. —Hospital costs have more than doubled during the last 1 fears, pulling insurance prem- .ums into their inflationary spiral. For example, since 1967 the cost of typical family coverage under Blue Cross - Blue Shield in Maryland has gone up 60 per cent. DENNIS THE MENACE —Americans paid $14.7 billion for health insurance in 1969, and got back more than $13 billion in benefits, a better return than on any other type of insurance. But to get that good a return, a person had to be part of a group. Individual policies paid only 51 cents on every premium dollar. —Conditions covering benefit payments serve to encourage) people to check into a hospital for treatment they could get in a doctor's office. The biggest health insurer is not one company but the 74 autonomous plans known as Blue Cross-Blue Shield. More than 70 million Americans are insured by Blue Cross, which negotiates with hospitals to set its benefit rates, and Blue Shield which 1 covers doctors bills. Critics say the negotiations are a sham: that the individual plans are dominated by hospital administrators and doctors who are, in effect, negotiating with themselves. The American Hospital Association owns rights to the name Blue Cross and can revoke the permission of any plan to use it. Blue Cross is under attack also from the insurance industry which says the plans have an unfair competitive advantage. Still, some of Blue Cross most vocal critics concede i 1 does a better job than private insurance companies in Page 17 The Hutch in son News Wednesday, September 15, 1971 trying to keep down hospital costs. "Blue Cross may not be doing enough, but the private companies are doing nothing," said Insurance Commissioner Herbert Denenberg of Pennsylvania. Blue Cross is changing in response to both criticism and competition. Value. It still means something at Penneys. 'UNIKS YA WANNA S!TIN < MECOANBR / DON'T CALL H£fc 'ALICE'.'* STAINLESS STEEL STEAK KNIFE START your set today. Durable, forever sharp stainless steel steak knife. ^p SPECIAL OFFER ^ , I*!!" AT LOCAL APCO DEALERS Only |||V 2021 E. 4th 2301 N. Main 512 N. Monroe 829 E. 30th 200 N. Main (S. Hutch) APCO/ THE CLOTHING CORNER... \'- ,<-'-/* W^.statM Sale 1 37 Reg. 1.69. Gaymode® Agilon® stretch nylon panty hose in nude or\ reinforced heel styles. Fashion colors; proportioned in short, regular, long, and extra-long lengths. Sale 3 tor $ 5 .Long sleeve cotton knit turtleneck polos with snap shoulder. Solid and stripe combinations. Sizes 1 to 3. Reg. 1.89 and 2.00 off. Made-to-measure drapes. Penn-Pres?* polyester/cotton corduroy crawl- about and playsuit for Infanta. Zip- front, snap-crotch. Solids and prints. .Slzes 1 /2to4. Reg. 3.50 and 3.69 Draperies made to any size. Over 70 patterns, 700 colors to choose from. Weighted corners, 4" hems and headers, many other quality features. Follow these instructions, bring us the measurements and we'll do the rest. i-t-i Width: Measure from (G) lo (H), or simply the width you want to cover. Length: For celling to floor length, measure (A) to (B). For regular floor length measure (C) to (D). For sill length measure from (E) to (F). Add 3 Inches If you want below-slll length. Sale prices effective through Saturday. They're more than shoes. They're Hush Puppies; BIKE Today, shoes can make a guy's wardrobe really sing. Just look at these new Hush Puppies*. Great styling. Great color. Even if you're just wearing a pair of jeans and a grub shirt anyone of these shoes can add a lot of life to the outfit. Try a pair. No telling where they'll lead you. From * . • QQ Hvislr 399 Yd. Polyester double-knit machine washable Perfect for what ever you're sewing. These are lull bolts not short lengths Special 3 for$ 1 Ladies' nylon tricot elastic leg briefs. White and pastels. Sizes S,M,L. Extra sizes, 3 for 1.25 Special 3.99 and 4.99 Misses' acrylic knit slacks bonded with acetate tricot. Black, brown, navy, or beet rootsolids._ and Patterns. Special Twin Size Penn-Prest percale print sheets at prlcesyou'd pay lor muslin! Cotton/ polyester. Pink or aqua. Flat or fitted. Full, 3.99; pillowcases, 2 for 2.49. Special 2" Men's polyester/ combed cotton knit sport shirts. Crew neck and berry collar styles with short sleeves. Fashion solids, jacquards .., and more! Special 2 for $ 5 Tqddler girls'pants sets of stretch nylon knit. Patterned tops, flare- leg pants. Sizes 2 to 4. Puppies • •*• JLiRANDBHOU Men's Luggage Men's 2 Suiter 1988 Women's Pullman 17. Weekender 12. Cosmetic Case • 10. Special Pillows priced so low you can buyextrasl Resilient polyester filling, cotton ticking. Full size. Boy's Short Sleeve Shirts Assorted stripes and solids orig. 2.44 to 2.98. Thermal blanket of polyester/rayon for light weight warmth, long wear Supcrnap finish prevents pilling. Machine washable. Popular colors. 72 x 90." .*i One size fits full and twin 3 CITY CENTER use our free layaway JCP&nney The values are here every day. Open Monday and Thursday Night 'Til 8:30

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