Pre-existing conditions are seriously harming our intellectual output

Articles like this really anger me - the lobbying and subsequent laws that have enabled insurance companies to deny coverage to those with pre-existing conditions are doing more than killing people who can no longer afford medical coverage.


If a great potential employee undergoing a reference check shows serious financial challenges because medical bills have piled up and not been paid, how many companies would seriously consider not hiring them? Don't care about the legality just the reality.

Knowing that benefit costs are choking them, will a CFO, knowing that a potential employee or one of their family members requires significant medical coverage, impact the hiring decision?

Are people with potential for greatness slipping away because they're focused on paying medical expenses for themselves or family members?

Can you see how this really is a recruiting issue?

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Steve - few can see this, lets' face it. It's ugly but it's real- both facts - that few can see this as a recruiting problem and the fact that people w/ pre-existing conditons are not only being denied coverage but also being denied employment.
Honestly, I think employers have access to too much information and not only is it an infringement on our civil rights, it's crippling our workforce. I don't think employers have any business accessing potential employees credit ratings and medical history. I think it's excessive and though such issues may impede some people's ability to do their job, it doesn't impede everyone's ability to do their job and it's grounds for discrimination. It's a terrible practice and should be done away with immediately.

Although some of the information is not germane to job performance a great deal of it can have a direct impact on not only the company but their customers as well. Consider the potential hiring of someone to work in a bank handling customer's funds who has serious credit problems, judgments and money problems. It is not necessarily true that someone with serious money problems will be involved in theft or fraud but the potential risk that the financial pressures might cause an otherwise honest person to be tempted if the opportunity was in front of them daily is a situation that risk managers need to look at if this person is handling customer funds. If they hired without a credit check, fraud occurred, the lawsuits would fly at the bank for lack of credit checking employees and managing risk.

In the case of medical history. If an employee has a history of even petit mal epilepsy or is on some kind of meds for any condition that might cause any impairment of coordination, that employee driving a fork lift could put others and themselves at a high risk of injury or death.

All this business you're closing now is clouding your ability to read my tea leaves! Of course this is what I'm talking about as well!

It's a double edged sword but one in which very few are having a cogent debate. Call me when you can you recruiting animal!
While I hadn't intended this post to be about political healthcare - in my mind, it is about health discrimination in recruiting - you missed a key determinator...early on on-going health and wellness education.

Phil McCutchen said:
Sad story. And one that is repeated time and again across the country and the world.

But the reality is that it is not economically feasible to pay top-dollar for top-quality medical care for each and every individual -- regardless of how altruistically desireable it might be.

The young man in the story had already racked-up more than $2 million in healthcare costs -- or 54 years worth of his mothers' $37,000/year salary. Only the largest of company's with a big insured employee pool might be able to cost-effectively afford such care. So every time a company makes a hire they are also making a bet that the candidates' value (ROI) exceeds their cost.

A national healthcare system might help. But I wouldn't bet on it. Its only chance of success is to implement serious tort reform, pharmaceutical management, administrative cost controls, and creating vastly larger insured pools among fewer insurance companies to spread the costs. All of which will be fought tooth and nail by the firms involved -- who have very deep pockets and thousands of lobbyists.

In the end it is more likely you'll end up with a two-tier system -- one for the wealthy who'll pay for superior private care; and one for everyone else who'll get what the get in Canada or the U.K. (adequate but not so good).

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