In 2008, I fell off a cliff during a hiking accident. I broke my neck, ankle, feet, teeth, and jaw. Thankfully, I was covered by my job’s health insurance at the time. But, when the recession hit and I lost my job, I opted out of the expensive COBRA option. I tried to get insurance on my own, but I was denied because my accident had somehow caused companies to consider my injuries “pre-existing” conditions. I tried to get doctors to defend me and say I was all healed up, but, I was already flagged. One insurance company offered to cover me for $1,596 a month. A month’s unemployment check wouldn’t have paid for that; and, even now, being employed, if I did go for that insurance plan, I wouldn’t have money left for rent at the end of the month. Fortunately, my current job offers me health insurance, but not everyone is as lucky as I am. Obama’s Affordable Care Act changes this system, and because of it, I’m voting to reelect our President on November 6th.
You may not be completely sold on Obama’s deficit-reduction plan, but you can count on the Affordable Care Act because it was approved in 2010 and although it won’t be fully implemented until 2014, changes have already been made. Through parents’ insurance policies, two million young adults up to 26 years of age are now covered, which has really helped their budgets during a time of high unemployment and even higher education costs. According to the Department of Health and Human Services, seniors and people with disabilities have saved more than $3 billion on prescription drug costs. And, since August 2012, women of all income brackets have been able to receive birth control, screenings for STDs, cervical cancer, and gestational diabetes; breastfeeding supports and supplies, domestic violence screenings, and well-woman visits without co-pays or deductibles. Aside from consumer protections, many more benefits are to come starting in 2014. That is, if Obama is reelected.
If Obama is not reelected, Romney will REPEAL Obamacare because he claims the act makes cuts on Medicare, but Romney himself wants to make Medicare cuts, while Obama has made sure to extend Medicare for another 8 years. Romney claims Obamacare raises taxes, which it only does for Medicare and investment income taxes for those who make above $200,000 a year. Because Romney is in that wealthy tax bracket, he probably doesn’t think his taxes should support the lower class’ health-care. If you think the same way, please realize that a nation is only as strong as its people, and if one class is down, the country can’t function as well as it should.
This is what Obama’s universal health-care system will do for the United States:
1) People will be insured even with pre-existing conditions.
3) If you make less than 133 percent of the poverty line, you will receive Medicaid.
4) If you make between 133 percent and 400 percent of the poverty line, you will get tax credits to help you buy private insurance.
5) Doctors and hospitals will be penalized if patients are re-admitted for an issue that could have been dealt with on a first visit, so health-care providers will have more incentive to deliver more efficient, higher quality health care.
6) If you can buy quality health insurance for less than 8 percent of your income, you are expected to do so and will receive a tax penalty if you don’t do so. This penalty isn’t unreasonable, as you can see on businessinsider.com. Yes, there will be more taxes in general in order for Obamacare to work, but it’s a small price to pay for a system that covers 30 million Americans that wouldn’t get health insurance otherwise.
In an NPR report, Len Nichols of George Mason University asked, “Why are health care premiums growing less than they were? Part of the reason is because, people have figured out, ‘Hey, we can do this stuff cheaper. And we’re going to have to, to survive in the long run. So let’s start now.’ ” I say let the Affordable Care Act play out and see what does and doesn’t work. Only progress can be made from trial and error. After all, if the Affordable Care Act is repealed, it might take another ten years before Congress actually makes another compromise on health-care.
(Featured image from barackobama.com)