Gender and Insurance

In a post the other day, Elizabeth Edwards made the point that individual markets in health insurance, à la John McCain's proposals, would be disadvantageous to women. For whatever reason this doesn't seem to get talked about much, but there's a significant gender disparity in health care costs and that plays a role in thinking about insurance in a variety of ways.

For example, in a world where everyone must buy insurance, and insurers must sell insurance to all customers at a flat rate, you have a strong incentive to try to attract a disproportionately male client base -- lots of ads on Spike TV and sports programming, no ads on Lifetime or Gray's Anatomy. How big a deal that would prove to be in the end is hard to predict in advance, but in general any system that involves consumer choice and for profit insurance firms is going to encourage people to design plans that better-fit the desires of men than of women.

Presented by

Matthew Yglesias is a former writer and editor at The Atlantic.

The Best 71-Second Animation You'll Watch Today

A rock monster tries to save a village from destruction.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

The Best 71-Second Animation You'll Watch Today

A rock monster tries to save a village from destruction.

Video

The Case for Napping at Work

Most Americans don't get enough sleep. More and more employers are trying to help address that.

Video

A Four-Dimensional Tour of Boston

In this groundbreaking video, time moves at multiple speeds within a single frame.

Video

Who Made Pop Music So Repetitive? You Did.

If pop music is too homogenous, that's because listeners want it that way.

Video

Stunning GoPro Footage of a Wildfire

In the field with America’s elite Native American firefighting crew

More in Politics

Just In