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Insurance Costs Under Obamacare - Page 35

post #511 of 739
Ata, I will take those stitches out for $1,000 an hour.
post #512 of 739
post #513 of 739
Quote:
TODAY marks the beginning of health care coverage under the Affordable Care Act’s new insurance exchanges, for which two million Americans have signed up. Now that the individual mandate is officially here, let me begin with an admission: Obamacare is awful.

That is the dirty little secret many liberals have avoided saying out loud for fear of aiding the president’s enemies, at a time when the ideal of universal health care needed all the support it could get. Unfortunately, this meant that instead of blaming companies like Novartis, which charges leukemia patients $90,000 annually for the drug Gleevec, or health insurance chief executives like Stephen Hemsley of UnitedHealth Group, who made nearly $102 million in 2009, for the sky-high price of American health care, the president’s Democratic supporters bought into the myth that it was all those people going to get free colonoscopies and chemotherapy for the fun of it.

I believe Obamacare’s rocky start — clueless planning, a lousy website, insurance companies raising rates, and the president’s telling people they could keep their coverage when, in fact, not all could — is a result of one fatal flaw: The Affordable Care Act is a pro-insurance-industry plan implemented by a president who knew in his heart that a single-payer, Medicare-for-all model was the true way to go. When right-wing critics “expose” the fact that President Obama endorsed a single-payer system before 2004, they’re actually telling the truth.

What we now call Obamacare was conceived at the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, and birthed in Massachusetts by Mitt Romney, then the governor. The president took Romneycare, a program designed to keep the private insurance industry intact, and just improved some of its provisions. In effect, the president was simply trying to put lipstick on the dog in the carrier on top of Mitt Romney’s car. And we knew it.

By 2017, we will be funneling over $100 billion annually to private insurance companies. You can be sure they’ll use some of that to try to privatize Medicare.

For many people, the “affordable” part of the Affordable Care Act risks being a cruel joke. The cheapest plan available to a 60-year-old couple making $65,000 a year in Hartford, Conn., will cost $11,800 in annual premiums. And their deductible will be $12,600. If both become seriously ill, they might have to pay almost $25,000 in a single year. (Pre-Obamacare, they could have bought insurance that was cheaper but much worse, potentially with unlimited out-of-pocket costs.)

And yet — I would be remiss if I didn’t say this — Obamacare is a godsend. My friend Donna Smith, who was forced to move into her daughter’s spare room at age 52 because health problems bankrupted her and her husband, Larry, now has cancer again. As she undergoes treatment, at least she won’t be in terror of losing coverage and becoming uninsurable. Under Obamacare, her premium has been cut in half, to $456 per month.

Let’s not take a victory lap yet, but build on what there is to get what we deserve: universal quality health care.

Those who live in red states need the benefit of Medicaid expansion. It may have seemed like smart politics in the short term for Republican governors to grab the opportunity offered by the Supreme Court rulings that made Medicaid expansion optional for states, but it was long-term stupid: If those 20 states hold out, they will eventually lose an estimated total of $20 billion in federal funds per year — money that would be going to hospitals and treatment.

In blue states, let’s lobby for a public option on the insurance exchange — a health plan run by the state government, rather than a private insurer. In Massachusetts, State Senator James B. Eldridge is trying to pass a law that would set one up. Some counties in California are also trying it. Montana came up with another creative solution. Gov. Brian Schweitzer, a Democrat who just completed two terms, set up several health clinics to treat state workers, with no co-pays and no deductibles. The doctors there are salaried employees of the state of Montana; their only goal is their patients’ health. (If this sounds too much like big government to you, you might like to know that Google, Cisco and Pepsi do exactly the same.)

All eyes are on Vermont’s plan for a single-payer system, starting in 2017. If it flies, it will change everything, with many states sure to follow suit by setting up their own versions. That’s why corporate money will soon flood into Vermont to crush it. The legislators who’ll go to the mat for this will need all the support they can get: If you live east of the Mississippi, look up the bus schedule to Montpelier.

So let’s get started. Obamacare can’t be fixed by its namesake. It’s up to us to make it happen.

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/01/01/opinion/moore-the-obamacare-we-deserve.html?src=me&ref=general&_r=2&

TL:DR communist conspiracy theorist hack hates Obamacare but loves Obamacare.
post #514 of 739
Piob, any thoughts on state run single payer? Can that work? I don't know how Vermont is implementing their system, but there are some obvious problems with doing single-payer at the state level. What happens if you cross state lines and need treatment?
post #515 of 739
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gibonius View Post

Piob, any thoughts on state run single payer? Can that work? I don't know how Vermont is implementing their system, but there are some obvious problems with doing single-payer at the state level. What happens if you cross state lines and need treatment?

Not sure as it depends on how a bunch of things shake out. There's so many legal/constitutional issues you totally have me stumped. Going out of state will be interesting. I think many of the issues that face Canada will suddenly appear in the US. For instance, they centralize many expensive/high tech/cutting edge things. In southern Ontario the city of London is where you go for most cardiac procedures, procedures you can get done in pretty po-dunk cities in the US. It's quite a burden for families to have to travel a few hundred miles and find lodging or basically leave their loved one alone for cardiac thoracic surgery. Also, what if your local center is all booked up? Send them out of state? Let them die?
post #516 of 739
http://reason.com/24-7/2014/01/11/replacement-contractor-named-to-run-obam
Quote:
Accenture has been chosen to replace CGI Federal as the lead contractor for the Obamacare enrollment website, which failed to work when it launched in October for millions of Americans shopping for health insurance, the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services said on Saturday.

CGI Federal, a subsidiary of CGI Group, built the website, HealthCare.gov, which was plagued by error messages and slow speeds for weeks after the launch. The glitches created a political crisis for President Barack Obama, threatening the roll-out of his signature healthcare law and emboldening Republican foes to call for its repeal.

So I trust the incompetent government workers who were just as responsible for this thing's failure will also be replaced, yes?
post #517 of 739
Quote:
Originally Posted by harvey_birdman View Post

http://reason.com/24-7/2014/01/11/replacement-contractor-named-to-run-obam
So I trust the incompetent government workers who were just as responsible for this thing's failure will also be replaced, yes?

They would first need to get negative performance reviews for 10 years in a row. And then they have the 10 years worth of appeals.
post #518 of 739
Good to see Arthur Anderson has fully repented its sins.
post #519 of 739

http://money.cnn.com/2014/01/13/news/economy/obamacare-coverage/index.html?iid=Lead

 

Quote:
 "Now more than 6 million Americans have been enrolled in Marketplace or Medicaid coverage and are getting peace of mind, knowing that they can get the care they need without losing everything they've worked and saved for," wrote Phil Schiliro, who returned to the White House last month to oversee health care policy initiatives, in a blog post on New Year's Day.
 

But the numbers are somewhat misleading. Here are the figures:

-- 2.1 million Americans signed up for private health insurance through the federal and state exchanges through the end of December.

-- 3.9 million people learned they're eligible for Medicaid or the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) in October and November.

 

The squishiness lies in the Medicaid number. The 3.9 million figure includes people who were already on Medicaid and are just renewing, as Marilyn Tavenner, the administrator for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services noted in a blog post late last month. So not all of these folks have coverage due to Obamacare.

post #520 of 739
This is the lie of importance:
Quote:
...and are getting peace of mind, knowing that they can get the care they need without losing everything they've worked and saved for...

Anyone that thinks a devastating illness still won't put one at peril of "losing everything" is a unicorn believer.
post #521 of 739
No ID needed for the homeless to sign up for healthcare,

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/01/16/outreach-health-insurance-homeless/4480053/

Maybe I'm wrong but I foresee a lot of Russian and Nigerian owned clinics springing up to help this under served population.

Obamacare, a true law of unintended consequences.
post #522 of 739
Can someone explain why "high-cost" healthcare is a problem? Before this Obamacare debacle it still seemed expensive and the US didn't collapse. Those with cash will pay and those without should have thought about it before they chose to be poor.
post #523 of 739
Quote:
Originally Posted by Piobaire View Post

This is the lie of importance:
Anyone that thinks a devastating illness still won't put one at peril of "losing everything" is a unicorn believer.

Really? You don't see the difference? Why would anyone bother with insurance at all if it's all just a crapshoot like you say?
post #524 of 739
Quote:
Originally Posted by CBrown85 View Post

Those with cash will pay and those without should have thought about it before they chose to be poor.

 

This is literally not at all how it happens in the real world.

post #525 of 739
Quote:
Originally Posted by CBrown85 View Post

Can someone explain why "high-cost" healthcare is a problem? Before this Obamacare debacle it still seemed expensive and the US didn't collapse. Those with cash will pay and those without should have thought about it before they chose to be poor.

Perhaps because those who were bearing the high cost were the ones actually getting something out of it (healthcare).

Also, this won't contain the increasing costs as some have claimed. The whole premise of the bill was that healthcare costs are out of control, and we need to "do something" because the middle class can't afford quality health care or are becoming less able. Look at medical procedures that have dropped in price. They are all elective procedures that people pay for without insurance. Insurance creates a price insensitivity, and with more insurance that price insensitivity will only get worse.

I agree just because it is expensive isn't a problem per-se, but I think in this case the cure is far worse than the disease, and it will actually make costs worse. Anecdotally, my insurance premiums have gone up much more quickly than they did pre-ACA, I have less choices in my plan, the coverage is worse, but hey free birth control...
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