Healthcare

Let’s keep Obamacare in perspective 

By the time you read this the population of the USA will be 325,000,000. The number of Americans enrolled in a Obamacare marketplace plan is about 11,100,000. That means that 3.38% of all Americans are directly affected by Obamacare, its premiums and subsidies, etc. Another eleven million or so have benefited from the expansion of Medicaid for the poor.

There are some tweaks for those of us on Medicare and for private and employer-sponsored; mostly coverage mandates affecting the insured, administration, taxes and fees for plan sponsors plus additional rules and regulations for providers.

The focus, however, is on the marketplace premiums, out-of-pocket costs, premium subsidies and the fact insurers are losing money and dropping out because of adverse selection.

But the fact remains we are talking about 3.38% of the US population that is directly affected at this point. 

Is fixing Obamacare that big of a deal as opposed to replacing it? Why can’t it be fixed? Trump says he wants to keep the guaranteed coverage for those with pre-existing conditions. Duh‼️ If you keep that, you keep adverse selection unless you do as Medicare does and impose a penalty for late enrollment. They don’t understand health care or health insurance.

rollingeyesIf you repeal it, you create chaos for eleven million people, you stress the health care system, you assure another eleven million on Medicaid are again without coverage. If you kill this or that provision, you create more problems.

There are ways to fix it, but believing you can simply repeal the law immediately is outright foolish. Any replacement will take years to build and at this point there is no viable replacement, especially the health savings account approach. Instead of simply wasting untold billions by starting over, a thoroughly thought out plan to fix what’s broken is necessary.

Those on the right who demand nothing less that full and immediate repeal of Obamacare are naive, shortsighted and playing into the hands of the Bernie Sanders of the world.

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2 replies »

  1. Also, if the Republican’s are smart, they will want to remove themselves from the health coverage issue – as best they can. As you know, for many, no amount will ever be enough. Think of annual enrollment, even if all you did was keep up with health inflation, which most employers were not willing to do, they got criticized. Why would Government want to take this on.

    So, look for them to open up markets as best as they can, then declare victory, maybe to end implementation in 2023, then change the subject. Look for a 10th amendment solution, push it down to the states, maybe with a federalized stop loss coverage.

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  2. Almost all of the 3 million and 11 million probably voted for the entitlement party, the D’s, so anything that keeps Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren in the forefront of the Democrat a Party is probably good for Republicans – as they look forward to increasing their majorities in both houses of congress in the 2018 elections. You don’t mention the 10+ million who had their coverage and employment disrupted – individual market, 30 hour, 50 employees, etc.

    Anything short of repeal and replace, even if implemented over 10 years, aka PPACA, would lose the Republicans more votes than repesl and replace.

    That, more than any other reason, the republicans failing to act on their promises, is why Trump had an opening to the republican nomination. Otherwise we would have gotten a more traditional republican, who would likely have beaten Ms Clinton as well.

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