September 11, 2007

If I were writing the press release...

I posted yesterday an idea on how and why Google should throw it's enormous financial weight and business smarts at the American healthcare problem. If I were in charge of the world, this is the press release I would write announcing a new plan from Google to help their uninsured users.



The company of “firsts” strikes again with new program that lets millions of U.S.-based users participate in company benefit programs

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. (September 11, 2007) - No stranger to innovation, Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) today announced that it would extend benefits to its user and customer base. Under Google’s Well America Plan, U.S.-based users of the company’s enterprise and web-based tools may apply for benefits. For $100 per month per individual, or $250 for a family of three or more, Google’s user base can select from a range of Google-sponsored benefits, including major medical, prescription drug, hospitalization, and alternative health programs. Three pricing tiers are available, with rates varying depending upon the annual deductible selected.

Google-sponsored dental plans are available from $9.99 per month, and Google will offer a complementary vision plan to all users.

“In its current form, the American healthcare system is not working,” said [[I WOULD PROBABLY GET IN TROUBLE IF I PUT A REAL NAME HERE]. “With a U.S. population of more than 301,000,000 -- an estimated half of whom are using Google or related applications at least occasionally -- our estimated U.S. user-base of 150,000,000 deserves access to affordable healthcare in the same way our employees do. We provide benefits to our employees, and now we will offer them to our customers and partners at an affordable rate.”

There are currently 45.8 million uninsured in the United States, half of whom live below the poverty level and as such are eligible for Federally and state-funded healthcare programs. That leaves 25 million Americans uninsured and ineligible for government-sponsored programs. Many of these individuals are self-employed knowledge workers and Google users.

“In a networked economy, the lines between users and employees, between partners and other stakeholders, are blurring,” said [[DON’T WANT TO GET SUED]]. “The search industry is based on content, and that content is provided by the millions of users who publish content to the web. That’s just one reason why this program is the right thing for Google to do.”

Google’s Well America Program will begin taking applications October 1. To apply for Google benefits, visit