Repealing health care reform
Republicans' efforts to undo the Affordable Care Act will complicate planning by seniors, who have already benefited from the new law.
This post comes from Jennie L. Phipps at partner site Bankrate.com's Retirement Blog.
Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives have launched an assault on the Affordable Care Act, or ACA -- voting for repeal, not modification.
Medicare recipients have already received some benefits from the law, and the House vote Wednesday only increases the complexity of retirement planning. Among the changes in the ACA are the following key improvements:
- Partial closing of the the Medicare Part D coverage gap, known as the "doughnut hole." In 2010, individuals in the doughnut hole were eligible to receive a $250 rebate on drug costs. This year, they will receive a 50% discount on brand-name drugs, so long as the ACA remains intact.
- Expanded preventive care services. The ACA eliminates co-pays for many Medicare-covered preventive services, including mammograms, colonoscopies and osteoporosis screenings.
- Improved access to insurance for people younger than 65. If you are older than 50 and don't get insurance at work, it has been nearly impossible in some states to buy coverage on your own. Under the ACA, those with pre-existing conditions can join their state's high-risk pools, which are mandated by the ACA. Beginning in 2014, people in this category will have access to even more insurance options through plans offered on state-based health exchanges and expanded Medicaid.
Supporters of the ACA says it will save taxpayers money in the long run and reduce the federal budget deficit by controlling health care costs. Those who would repeal the law say the Congressional Budget Office, which calculated these savings, made mistakes and this will soon be an entitlement program that runs amuck. Post continues after video.
It seems unlikely that the Republicans will be able to muster enough votes in both houses of Congress to push through repeal -- and personally, I'm glad. Moving toward broader health care coverage seems smarter and better for people approaching or living in retirement than the GOP's dig-in-your-heels commitment to the status quo.
My recent experience with a death in the family showed me Medicare's strength and some of its warts, and it left me with the conviction that no public health care program is ever going to be perfect -- but having one available is extraordinarily important.
Fundamentally, I agree with this point of view from Calvin Bruce, managing editor of Jackson & Coker, a health care research firm, who said: "One can only hope that the impact and benefits of medical technology, drug discoveries and scientific advancements will overshadow any setbacks experienced in implementing health care reform stemming from renewed debate in legislative circles."
In other words, we can't just stand still.
the only thing obama care has done 1. made it hard for me to feed my kids
2 Raised the cost of medical insurance.
3 .Lowered the coverage of medical insurance.
4. Raised taxes, and made a mess of them
5 The Cost of living is going thru the roof. (its almost 5.00 for a
gallon of milk)
6 the only thing i see is a smaller pay check
7 what good does being able to afford medical insurance if it doesn't cover the problem. and the medical industry just raise their prices any way.
I like to know what actual changes they have made that were for us. and don't give me that nonsense about major medical problems , even with good medical insurance i still ended up paying as much as five hundred dollars for 15 minute doctors visit,for a specialist. they are feeding us a line, they have not changed anything for us. just taken more money from us and given to the insurance industry. every time they stick their nose into something the only thing that happens is we get poor. and the problem doesn't get solved do these people in washington work for us. My guess is they don't. Because what they are saying has nothing to do with every day life.
No thanks, not for me, I would actually prefer one cohesive standard all across the US which would not allow the cheapest States to compete with the higher-cost States over health care coverage costs. I have a pre-existing condition through no fault of my own, and frankly I need the ACA provision banning discrimination against me and other such people. As I am also out of my 30+ year career due to declining eyesight, I could really benefit from an expansion of Medicare to as low as age 56 too.
Imagine that you are age 54, thrown out of your decent-paying career because of a partial loss of sight in just your left eye, and having to learn an entirely now career from scratch, without any medical insurance coverage for a minimum of the next 11 years, because one of three dentists botched a root canal operation in 1986, that eventually resulted in you having to have a blood transfusion in 1987, that gave you an unknown virus, which you didn't even know that you had until 19 years later, long after the statute of limitations had expired??? Just my kind of luck, eh??? Sorry, we can't afford to continue to insure you now that you have lost your job because of your left eye??? Don't laugh, as it can happen to anyone, at least until 2014 under present law, by when I'll be old enough to get Medicare!!!
I guess that we will just have to wait until after the 2012 elections (or later) to see if one of our political parties can gain enough support to hold a majority in both houses of Congress as well as the Presidency, like the Democrats did when this law was passed, as the ACA law will stand until then, I promise you!!!
I really don't know how anyone could vote republican with good conscious any longer.
Republicans get sick just as often as the democrats. They can lose their homes due to their illness, just like the democrats. They can be denied medical care, just like the democrats. Now, it will be more likely, I guess.
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