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Practices in Health Care

This study examines the historical circumstances that brought about our private health and disability insurance system in the US. We look at the organizational structures of private-for-profit and ―non-profit‖ insurance companies that dominate the health care industry and the strategies these firms use to delay, diminish, and deny payment for health care and disability benefits for people across the country. We discuss the impact of delays and denials on patients and disabled individuals and the ways insurance companies deliberately create psychological doubt and self-blame among those who are legitimately entitled to benefits. We summarize the results of twenty extensive interviews with people who have experienced major difficulties in receiving payments of benefits and for heath care service they expected from their insurance providers. We further examine the general lack of regulation, enforcement of existing laws and government motivation to meet the health and disability needs of all Americans, and the socio-economic power of the health insurance industry to dominate health care policy.

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