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The New Health Insurance Solution: How to Get Cheaper, Better Coverage Without a Traditional Employer Plan Hardcover – September 8, 2005

3.9 out of 5 stars 41 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

A Health Insurance Revolution is Here!

"Americans can finally get affordable lifetime health insurance for themselves and their family. Pilzer's The New Health Insurance Solution shows you how every step of the way."
—Mark Victor Hansen, cocreator, #1 New York Times bestselling series Chicken Soup for the Soul®, and coauthor, The One Minute Millionaire

"Millions of entrepreneurs and small businesspeople think they can't afford health insurance. Now they can."
—Randy Fields, cofounder, Mrs. Fields Cookies

"A priceless guide for every American, and especially for anyone with a family member with a health problem."
—Anthony Robbins, author, Awaken the Giant Within and Unlimited Power

"I was on COBRA health insurance and the information in this book lowered our monthly premium by $700 a month."
—John Grillos, Hillsboro, California

American families and businesses don't realize there are affordable new ways to get health insurance—without a traditional employer plan. The New Health Insurance Solution explains how you can get better, cheaper, and safer health insurance, and save thousands of dollars a year on all your healthcare costs. The book also explains why you should take your spouse and children off your employer health plan, how to use the new Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) to get a double tax break, how to cut prescription drugs costs by 50% or more, how to get health insurance between jobs, and how to get affordable healthcare for yourself or your parents in retirement.

About the Author

PAUL ZANE PILZER is a world-renowned economist, and a former advisor in two White House administrations, as well as an entrepreneur, and a New York Times bestselling author. A former commentator on NPR and CNN, he is also the cofounder of a company providing individual health benefits to employees of Fortune 500 companies. His previous books include the New York Times bestseller God Wants You to Be Rich, The Wellness Revolution, Other People's Money, and Unlimited Wealth. See www.paulzanepilzer.com for more information.
For more information on this book, see www.tnhis.com.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (September 8, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0471747157
  • ISBN-13: 978-0471747154
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.2 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,224,090 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I am a V.P. at a large Tennessee-based third party administrator and typically work with sizable employers (over 250 employees). My interest was in gathering more information about the individual plan market and how it works. As the title suggests, the book is loaded with surprising information about the individual plan market.

First, I have to admit that I knew very little about individual plans (other than what is available at numerous Internet quoting sites) and was shocked to see how inexpensive individual plans are in many very large states. For instance, the average price of an individual plan in California is less than $200 per month (individual plans are on a monthly contract, not annual like group). If you live in California, this is a book you should pick up to learn more about individual plan rates there. Plans here in Tennesse are a little more expensive and the author did a good job of explaining why plans cost less across numerous states. If you are in New Jersey or New York or Massachussetts, it is clear that you are screwed when it comes to trying to find affordable insurance for you and your family. That is because the carriers are not allowed to underwrite you and therefore have to take the crack users with the marothoners and triathletes -- great thinking, NY and NJ! The result? Carriers price individual plans to the moon.

Second, the HSA is an excellent tax savings vehicle as it is one of the few government approved accounts you can put your money in tax free, use it tax free (for medical expenses) and take it out tax free. We administrate HSAs for many groups here in Tennessee and in North Carolina -- so that was no surprise. What was surprising was the availability of individual HSAs and how inexpensive they are -- again, depending on where you live.
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Format: Hardcover
Pilzer's general proposition is that the market place will take care of the health insurance issues in this country if we just let the free market operate. He maintains that individual health insurance is widely available at reasonable cost and people, including employers and employees, should take advantage of the individual market for health insurance. I believe he tends to force the facts to fit this basic proposition.

He is easy to read with a breezy style. The book has pretty good explanations of HIPAA and COBRA and a number of good tips. However, health insurance in the United States is complicated. The price he pays for simplicity is accuracy and thoroughness. It is a pretty good book if you are 35, perfectly healthy, and thinking about buying insurance. But what is good for when you are 35 is not necessarily good 5, 10 or 20 years later. (Should I pay for drug coverage?. . . pregnancy coverage?) I would never rely on this book for making policy decisions or for forming opinions on healthcare in the United States. I strongly disagree with many of his policy recommendations.

Some problematic propositions from the book:

1. Several places in the book he claims that insurance companies in the individual market only turn down or place exclusions on 20% of applicants and 80% are accepted as healthy. He uses this statistic to support his idea that most people can get coverage in the individual market. I don't know about the accuracy of this statistic, but one problem is that people who are uninsurable often do not apply for insurance on the open market. They stay on their employer plan. They go into a risk pool. They buy a conversion plan. Etc. Even Pilzer advises against applying for insurance if you think you might get turned down.
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Format: Hardcover
This book was a terrific summary that will help individuals, families and businesses understand many new ways to control health insurance costs. It is NOT mainstream thinking within the insurance industry. Like bankers, insurance executives tend to be nervous about change, and it may be more difficult than Mr. Pilzer asserts to find knowledgable counselors for individuals or businesses who want to apply his suggestions.

My experience with the book was very similar to that of the TPA (Third Party Administrator) in TN as I found myself flipping back to various pages to make sure I "got it". Many times I did this only to find a chart summarizing Pilzer's response to my question on the next page, so my advise is to read the book twice, the first time only for concepts.

A California resident, I have checked a couple of plans for my family of three and am able to validate Pilzer's data personally. I was a Fortune 1000-employee for many years before becoming self-employed and I'm certain his assertion that individual plans are less expensive for healthy people is true, despite the conventional wisdom in the group-oriented insurance industry to the contrary. Too many employees covered under group insurance are unaware of how much they and their employer is actually spending on health care.

Overall Pilzer does a very good job explaining critical health care issues. I woud have liked to see even more information on long term care and disability insurance. For me, the most relevant chapter was his acknowledgement that there are many wrong ways for employers to approach a transition away from group insurance.

This book is a sound investment for anyone who pays or might pay any portion of their family's health insurance, or dare I say bureaucrats with a need of a dose of well-researched reality. It also has some excellent strategies for those approaching age 65 or seeking early retirement.
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