Insurance commissioners hold significant power as they oversee one of the largest segments of the U.S economy. Their work impacts millions of Americans daily, forcing these commissioners to make ethical decisions with the public’s best interest in mind.
However, there are many coincidences where insurance commissioners within various states are siding with major insurance companies after being wined and dined. Although most do not consider dinner to be a gift or a form of bribery, many are suspicious about the ethics of the decision making process.
In a recent article released on The Washington Post, Michael J. Mishak writes:
“An investigation by the Center for Public Integrity found that half of the 109 state insurance commissioners who have left their posts in the past decade have gone on to work for the industry they used to regulate — many leaving before their terms expire. Just two moved into consumer advocacy.”
Some of these commissioners could very well believe that they are making decisions based on the public’s best interest. However, there is a fine line between business and pleasure raising questions about the integrity of the process. In most cases, it seems as though these positions are used as a stepping stone to reach for a higher level of work within insurance agencies. It is time to take a stand and rid the health care system of the waste and abuse similar to this that we see today.
Read the full article, Drinks, junkets and jobs: How the insurance industry courts state commissioners, from The Washington Post for more information.