'World News' Blasts Medicare Competitors in One-Sided Story
ABC âWorld News with Charles Gibsonâ is making a case for socialized medicine one day at a time. This time it targeted one of the newscastâs key demographics â senior citizens.
âMillions of older Americans are facing an important decision right now,â âanchor Charles Gibson said. âAnd some hard sell insurance agents see them as easy targets. Every December, seniors choose between Medicare or any of dozens of private plans that compete with the government. This year, almost 9 million opted for the private plans. And as ABCâs David Muir reports, some now have serious regrets.â
The December 20 âWorld Newsâ used one piece of anecdotal evidence of where private insurance allegedly didnât work. A 76-year-old man from Chickasha, Okla., named Bobby Box ran up a $45,000 in medical bills but didnât realize his Medicare Advantage Plan didnât cover some expenses when he signed up for it. Box told âWorld Newsâ he was tricked.
âHe had Medicare but says an insurance agent told him he could do better and enrolled him in a private plan, a so-called Medicare Advantage Plan,â Muir said. âHundreds of companies now sell these plans to seniors, and sometimes these plans can work to their advantage. But the problem is in many cases, seniors are pushed to sign up, not realizing what they're getting, or as Bobby learned, what theyâre not getting.â
At the end of the story, ABC admitted that the plan had indeed covered his needs.
The story had no voice from private insurance providers, but did offer comment from Robert Hayes, president of the
âThere are millions of people who are being tricked,â Hayes said.
As for the other side, the only offering was a small comment from Muir.
âThe insurance industry says itâs cracking down on bad agents who give these plans a bad name,â Muir said. âAs for Bobby, he fought for months and got that hospital bill paid. Heâs now back on Medicare, where he believes he should have stayed in the first place.â
This is the latest round of ABC favoring government health care over private options. On December 10-12, âWorld Newsâ ran a three-part series about socialized medicine and even suggested the VA Hospital system was evidence government-ran health care works.