New Hampshire has a bill to make insurance coverage for yoga mandatory. HB 1464. The “in” for this new mandatory benefit is that, in this instance, that everyone pays more for coverage so that yoga can be covered as a substitute for opioids.
Big insurance is ready to take your money. In fact, the market already offers optional coverage for yoga if you and your health care provider decide it could be beneficial for any number of possible ailments.
Yoga has been proven to help with insomnia, PTSD, depression, general anxiety, and stress. As it becomes more mainstream, an increasing number of people are recognizing the life-changing benefits of the practice. The cost of practicing regularly at a yoga studio adds up, with an average drop-in being $18 per class, and an annual unlimited membership being around $1,200. The amount of yoga needed for therapeutic benefits is costly and many of us are questioning how yoga can be made more accessible to all.
If Yoga cures almost everything state-mandated yoga can cure you too. A path to enlightenment on someone else’s dime. At present Medicare and Medicaid do not cover Yoga. But? If your state passes a law mandating it then taxpayers could be made to pay for your yoga therapy.
The New Hampshire bill is not limited to these State mismanaged services.
Coverage for Yoga Therapy. Each insurer that issues or renews any individual policy of accident or health insurance providing benefits for medical or hospital expenses, shall provide to certificate holders of such insurance, who are residents of this state, coverage for yoga therapy as an alternative to opioids. Benefits provided under this section shall not be subject to any greater copayment, deductible, or coinsurance than any other similar benefits provided by the insurer.
Making insurance companies more money and increasing the cost of Yoga is also on the table. The problem?
I’ve yet to see a single thing that got more affordable because the government-mandated that someone else pays for it. Yoga will be no different.
Everyone’s rates and costs will go up.
The Insurance coverage mandate will experience legislative mission creep until yoga cures everything driving up rates and costs further.
New Hampshire will probably demand that since there is potential taxpayer money at stake that licensing be required, ushering in the rise of the Yoga Cartel which will only make the service more expensive.
The alternative would be to let the marketplace and individuals (with guidance from health care providers) drive price and accessibility. But there is no law preventing politicians from meddling in the market, especially Democrats.
And no, I’m not saying Yoga can’t or won’t do any of the thing’s adherents suggest. I think there are probably significant benefits for some. I’m saying that government meddling will make it cost more and make a mess of it. The state should stay out of the way and let the experts manage the care, options, coverage, and costs rather than force coverage into being by their political will.