Monday, August 14, 2017

Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini Received a 47% Pay Hike in 2016 While Forcing Members to Pay for Preventive Services

Apparently a cemetery full of family members who died of digestive-related cancer means nothing to Aetna, which is more concerned with lavishing its CEO with bonuses and stock options than keeping its members healthy. My policy says that a "screening colonoscopy is covered 100% for people 50 years and over as a preventive measure," yet when I arranged for the procedure I was told I would be required to pay considerable out-of-pocket fees. (How is this 100%?)  

Come to find out the reason is because my doctor (MY DOCTOR!) ordered them to also do an endoscopy while I'm under, so suddenly I am responsible for costs associated with anesthesia, the facility, etc. -- never mind the fact that I have severe acid reflux, an uncle who died from esophageal cancer in 2013 and a brother who recently died of bile-duct cancer and it would save them beaucoup bucks to catch any possible problems early. (That's why it's called PREVENTIVE medicine.)

If this man really thinks average Americans have $600 lying around to spend on something they thought was covered, he is delusional. Yet surely he must know that putting off an important screening like this will only lead to higher medicals costs if it must be treated later. Voters have been duped into thinking Mexicans, Muslims and Chinese are what's keeping them from getting ahead in this country, but it's the corporate class -- namely one percenters like this man -- that is truly to blame. Bertolini's salary went from $27.9 million in 2015 to $41 million in 2016 -- a 47% increase. And how much of a raise do you think the working class at Aetna got during the same period? (My news-editor brother hasn't had a raise in eight years.) In 1980, CEOs earned 42 times what average workers made. Today they make 373 times as much. Why? We kept hearing that average Joes (and Janes) were angry during the 2016 presidential election -- and they have good reason to be. But it's high time they started to be angry at the right people. Only then -- as we briefly saw before Republicans brilliantly managed to do to Occupy Wall Street protesters what they've done to unions -- can we truly have a revolution. (No, Susan: Allowing a billionaire who only looks out for himself didn't do the trick.)

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1 comment:

Damian said...

Nailed it. What is the rationale for a 41% increase in one year?! No regular Joe gets over what, 5% max unless some sort of promotion is involved, and these days something that just keeps up with cost-of-living increases is a huge windfall.

No, "keeping up with the Joneses" isn't a rationale, even if it's dressed up as "securing top-level talent yada yada." Nobody's saying, or at least I'm not, that executives shouldn't earn a premium. But why should it be so inflated and still practically doubling constantly? That $13 mill in one freaking year could've covered a lot of necessary procedures, or at least given a decent raise to dozens of paper pushers. But there is no pressure to keep things in line, other than that brief moment after 2008 when the financial class lay low for a brief while and OWS shed light on the problem not long thereafter. Instead, it's hard-working fruit-pickers and hotel maids that are supposed to be problem, hahahaha.

And whenever the left gets any sort of lever of power again, all our energies will be spent on cleaning up the mess of this administration, just like Obama had to fix Dubya's for most of his two terms. Fixing things isn't progress! Sigh.

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