Nov 22, 2010
We are only going into the second year of the VEBA, but there are already new cuts and increased co-pays for retiree health care coverage at the Big Three auto companies. The latest round of attacks, which will begin on January 1, 2011, are the biggest ones so far.
It's a big attack on drug coverage – with increased co-pays for brand medication and with a 3rd tier drug category added requiring you to pay $80 for a 30-day prescription for many drugs.
It's a big attack on who you can see – will you have a right to see a doctor or will they start funneling people into seeing a Physician's Assistant or a Nurse Practitioner?
It's a big attack on how much you pay – retirees will have to pay a $50 co-pay to use Urgent Care and your visits to an HMO doctor go up 150% – and more because all referrals were covered in the fee you paid to your primary care doctor.
And despite promises that you can now keep your children on your medical plan until they reach age 26, there are so many restrictions, hardly anyone will qualify.
This is not a guarantee of medical care for the next 80 years – as UAW officials promised – it's already the start of eliminating medical coverage.