Thursday, March 15, 2012

Saving ACC?

The Herald reports that the government may be abandoning its plans to privatise ACC, after it realised that Nick Smith's proposed solution of crippling it to guarantee the profits of parasitic Aussie insurance companies would cost serious money:

The Government is backing away from plans to rejig the Accident Compensation Corporation to allow competition from private insurers because of concerns it will drive up costs for small and medium businesses and the taxpayer.


"The political bottom line is it wasn't going to be possible to introduce competition on a basis that was level playing field between private sector and public without substantial increases in premiums or levies, particularly for small and medium employers," a well-placed source told the Herald.

Instead, they're apparently looking at extending the accedited employer scheme to small and medium businesses, allowing them to reduce costs by managing their own claims. Its better than giving away the entire scheme to foreign, for-profit parasites, but it still poses risks, in that employers can underprovide (and are backstopped by the public health system in doing so). Any extension needs to be tightly regulated to ensure that the cover it provides is at least as good as that provided by ACC.