Yet another case for National Health Insurance

It seems the Dayton Daily News got scooped again by another newspaper- this time out of Tennessee. When the Mazer Corporation closed Dec. 31, 2008, without filing the proper notice with the State- it seems they also stole 3 weeks of health insurance from their soon to be laid off workers:

A new development has added insult to injury for former employees of Mazer Corporation. Former employees are finding out their health insurance was gone long before they were sent home….

Three weeks ago Mazer Corporation told their employees they’d be laid off, but they left one thing out—that their health insurance had lapsed a month earlier.

“According to our handbook, anytime a termination at midnight that night that’s when all your benefits and health insurance is terminated,“ said Hanneken.

Instead, health insurance was terminated on December 3, but Mazer continued to deduct premiums.

via Former Mazer Corp. Employees Had No Insurance | TriCities.

If President Obama really wants to see an economic stimulus- it’s time to create a national, single payer health plan with simplified reimbursement schedules. It’s time to truly level the playing field between small and large businesses in the delivery of health care benefits to hard-working Americans (at least those of us who still have jobs). Depending on this arcane system of employer controlled “group health plans” makes it near impossible for people to truly have free will in selecting jobs.

We deserve a plan as good as the one Congress gets. Especially, with the deficits we are about to incur bailing out the financial wizards of Wall Street.

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19 Responses

  1. ShortWest Rick January 25, 2009 / 11:33 pm
    Now you’ve opened a can of leaches David. Health care has been traditionally awarded to the employed maintaining full time status after six months, dolled out by the employer. Traditional thinking is health care is a perk, like earned vacation days after a year. There will need to be definition between basic health care, preventative medicine, elective procedures, emergency response, long term care, extending the life of the terminally ill, basically a consensus on how it will work, what is covered under universal health care and what is elective. Until that is addressed the employed who have health insurance will turn a deaf ear.
  2. Drexel Dave Sparks January 26, 2009 / 7:54 am
    I’m sure Gene will say it’s his damn money anyway.
  3. Dad January 26, 2009 / 12:01 pm
    This is a fine example of why labor unions are an absolute must.
    In a union contract, health insurance is included as a condition of work, like vacations, overtime, layoffs, severance, and retirement. It is not a perk or privilege. You belong to the bargaining unit and you get the stuff that’s in the contract.
    And it ought to be available to every American, but since the days of the Taft-Hartley Act in 1946 (!!! Yes, I can remember that), unions in America have had a bum rap, even with my son.
  4. Ice Bandit January 26, 2009 / 1:29 pm
    Hey Dave. Why would you think Uncle Sam would run 100 percent of the health care system any better than the 40 percent it now mismanages? El Bandito de Helio could fix this “problem” in an afternoon, and without socializing an industry that does fine when free of government meddling. And that is by increasing the number of doctors. Anually, med schools turn down hundreds of thousands of applicants who potentially fine doctors, while simultaneously throwing out the welcome mat to medicos from China, India and the Phillipines. If, for example, Wright State Med School’s usually takes 50 first year students a year, tell them to up the admission to 75. And when the AMA bitches a blue streak remind them that we own the Universities and that we, not they, will determines Ohio’s need of future doctors. This is change we can all believe in (tongue firmly in cheek)…….
  5. John Ise January 26, 2009 / 1:52 pm
    Fact #1: Canada’s single payer system costs significantly less that the US for-profit health system model, and

    Fact #2: Canada covers everyone in a system that emphasizes prevention as opposed to our system that emphasizes treatment (& profits) and fails to cover 15% of the population (& rising), and

    Fact #3: Canadians as a whole are significantly healthier (based on on every health indicator) than Americans.

    It’s long overdue to junk our system in favor of a single payer model. High time to allow everyone who wants to buy into Medicare.

  6. David Lauri January 26, 2009 / 6:34 pm
    How ironic that Mazer Corporation would do this given that David Mazer is a medical doctor, and apparently a medical doctor who should do some time in prison. Economic misfortune can happen to anyone. Continuing to collect health insurance premiums and not telling the employees they have no coverage takes a decision on the part of a company’s management. Marshall Mazer, Mazer Corporation’s founder, is probably turning over in his grave.
  7. Jane January 26, 2009 / 10:25 pm
    Hmmm, where is Gene?
  8. Teresa Lea January 27, 2009 / 2:58 pm
    That is just sickening in so many ways.

    State Law requires insurance companies to notify employees that their premiums aren’t being remitted after 60 days – that is if the premium is being deducted from the employees check. If this notice didn’t go out, the insurance company is required to pay all benefits and then recover them from the employer.
    Granted, it has been a long time since I took the test (or sold any insurance for that matter) and things do change, but I doubt this law has changed.

    $10 says they were pre-taxing the premiums and getting a tax write off on the money as well.

    God Bless the USA.

  9. In the 'burg January 27, 2009 / 8:04 pm
    They deducted 401K contributions from the employees’ checks, too— but never deposited those, either.


  10. GladGirl January 28, 2009 / 4:00 am
    I have a friend who is a Mazer victim. She’s, as well as her former coworkers, are worried about getting W2’s. So far no one has returned phone calls.
    She was so upset that she left her last pay stub on her desk so she has nothing to go on for her taxes.
    There wasn’t even an HR rep at the office the day of the big “your screwed” email that went out after 4:00. No one to answer questions about unemployment, benefits,etc….
    The email stated that they valued their employees and were going to “market” them with the new company for possible jobs.
    One beautifully ironic twist to this story, she was hired as a full time news producer within 4 days of the layoff. Sad thing about that is, she’s gotten most of the Mazer story from this Tennessee news source. What are the DDN reporters and local newscasters actually doing in this town?
  11. David Lauri January 28, 2009 / 10:36 am
    Your friend and other ex-Mazer employees could do a Google on “David Mazer” and Longwood and they’d find a couple ways to contact the former president of the Mazer Corporation.
  12. J. R. Locke January 29, 2009 / 4:01 am
    I don’t understand the whole health “insurance” thing. To me the question of humans quest for longevity means health care is always going to be a costly endeavor. Wouldn’t we be better using some money to start a “dying with dignity” campaign that tries to promote the most costly – least probable to survive diseases for people over the age of 50 – to weigh their decision against the decision of society as a whole. How many kids could one cycle of chemo and cancer treatments feed?

    The only thing I wish is that hospitals and doctors would give you a price list of what procedures cost before they do them. The only thing they asked me was insurance information. Next time you could tell me sitting in a hospital room for 35 minutes will cost me $650.

  13. Larkin January 29, 2009 / 2:36 pm
    John Ise– well said. The Canadian health care system is an excellent model.
  14. Shafted Employee March 5, 2009 / 5:39 pm
    It just keeps getting better. Mazer actually started to default on insurance, commissions, expense checks as well as payment to vendors in October. However we the blind, were unaware until our email termination on 12/30/08. The icing on the cake was the subsequent notification from Anthem that our insurance was terminated on 12/3/08 but they didn’t bother sending out notices until 1/16/09. Apparently Mazer had made provisions that coverage would end immediately, so that they could receive a deduction for not extending the customary 30 days. And everyone is out their last week of pay.

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