Monday, January 16, 2017

The Future of Obamacare

Someone commented here earlier on that I should be worried over Republican threats to repeal Obamacare. That's a valid concern since my Anthem/Blue Cross health policy comes through Obamacare and, yes, I was concerned. For good reason since I have a chronic and serious illness requiring frequent medical consultation and considerable cost.

This Time magazine article explains the likely Republican moves with Obamacare and, as they've pointed out, it's not a complete shutdown of OC but "repeal and replace" or "repeal and delay". In either case it doesn't appear changes would take place immediately. As the article explains:

"The repeal-and-delay approach would repeal Obamacare as soon as possible, giving Republicans a symbolic victory. But it would delay the effective dates of key aspects of the repeal for a number of years. That way, consumers would not lose coverage abruptly, and lawmakers would not bear the political fallout of constituents’ outrage before the 2018 Congressional midterm elections. Under this scenario, the current system would continue largely as-is for a few years until a replacement plan is passed."

 " The repeal-and-replace route, by contrast, would see Congress repeal Obamacare and pass a replacement bill soon thereafter. At his news conference on Wednesday, Trump spoke in favor of this approach, saying that an Obamacare replacement would come nearly simultaneously with repeal."

What would those replacements look like?

" The proposals would generally favor younger consumers over older consumers—the former would likely pay less for coverage than they currently do, while the latter would pay more. Insurers would also be able to charge women more than men for coverage, a practice that the Affordable Care Act banned. Replacement plans would generally be less friendly toward people with pre-existing conditions."

So, it might be a little worse for people like me. I'll likely pay more, but my premiums have been going up anyway. My main concern is how much costs go up. But it's better than nothing and does put my mind at ease a bit. It looks like for now I just stay the course:

Consumers should take the [incoming] administration at its word that there will be no interruption, and go about their business,” says Dan Mendelson, president of Avalere Health, a health-care consulting firm based in Washington."

I've been fairly content with my Obamacare plan. Even if I wasn't, some libertarians, like to poke fun at those of us on government subsidized health insurance. I have no beef with it, my own case aside. You do what you have to do, and I've reminded my fellow libertarians that LP Presidential candidate, the late Harry Browne, recommended subsidized accounts of private health insurance- which is what Obamacare is- as a way deal with the health insurance issue. Regardless, I'm not one to look a gift horse in the mouth.


At 9:04 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I feel for you & others in your shoes. Have you checked out privatized health insurance? Churches offer them, they are like a co-op of sorts. Another tip worthy of remembering are the doctors & clinics that charge pay per cost. They aren't caught up in the insurance fraud game, which means they charge according to minor profit retail.
In all liklihood, if there is a rewrite, congress & big pharma will come out on top again. It's a big game to them, playing party against party, for the same awards.
The Dems want to toss it, the Dems demand to keep it, circle game. Remember the 60 minute documentary called Under the Influence, from 2009? Nothing's changed. Both party's are still playing the game. Awareness is our only hope of fighting the party games that affect our lives. Admitting both party's are guilty is too hard for party freaks, & unfortunately it will take a huge united movement to set things right.
Check out the other modes of help, Fred, & don't be afraid or ashamed of using crowd sourcing. People like the blessings they receive from helping others. Don't let them down.
Under The Influence:

At 9:12 AM, Blogger Henchman Of Justice said...

Why is it so hard for recipients of healthcare to deny that they never pay 100% for their healthcare?

Why is it so hard for healthcare that the 2 party system has to lie, knowingly pass an act of law without reading it in full?

It is immoral and unethical to make HOJ pay for others' healthcare or pay a fine for not insuring yourself for living life......No supreme Court will ever enforce the penalty/fine on individuals who go without health insurance.

If a SCOTUS were to uphold the individual fine, then the SCOTUS is illegitimate, and the judges need to be offed.

Drain the Swamp with death!

At 9:23 AM, Blogger Fred Mangels said...

Seems to me that insurance- specifically government related insurance- dominates the market now. There used to be something called "Simplecare". Doctors with SC would see a patient for $35.00. I looked a while back and couldn't find any reference to SC. I can only guess the dominance of Obamacare and others rendered SC irrelevant. It costs me $80.00 to go to Redwood Family Practice as they're not in network with Anthem Blue Cross.

I used to be able to go to the old North Coast Family Practice for as low as $35 depending on how many issues I had. I think out of pocket costs have gone up to make up for shortages from government health insurance- some of which provide the lowest reimbursement rates out there. MediCal being one, I think.

At 12:03 PM, Blogger Henchman Of Justice said...

HOJ pays cash, every time, 100%......Never ever ever has a visit for fake shit like many worry warts do!

Cost of healthcare is high for 2-3 reasons......Greed, too many hospital visits by worry warts and equipment!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Fuck all the elite wealthy fucks with policies.

At 12:18 PM, Blogger Henchman Of Justice said...

2 party system supporters = monkey see monkey do

At 12:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

HOJ, well said. The avg person is paying anywhere from 400-900 per month for insurance, yet never need to use it except for annual checkups where the doctor tries to sell you some colesterol drug. Let's just say 500 per month x's 12 is being spent for a one time 40 buck office visit. This not only hurts the mind, it gets worse. This 500 per month paid for so & so's 40 buck visit for minor cost visit, like birth control pills or wart removal. Cutting to the chase & rounding off, we spent approx $6000.00 for dimwit's wart removal.
I would rather take on a serious patient's monthly bill, than be subjected to forced payments of warts & bc pills. We deserve the option. Freeing our monthly takeout would allow us to help those who actually need our help.

At 2:13 PM, Blogger sky hammer said...

The health insurance I had for 30 years and liked cost me $8000/year for my last year before Osama canceled it.I had $0 deducible/$0 coinsurance and didn't have to worry about networks.
Now I have Osama Care Gold Plan, $0 deductible/25% coinsurance, only good in a very small network and cost me $1088/month. This year it changed from a PPO to an EPO, which means If I don't to an In network doctor/hospital, I have no coverage.Not only that, I have to pay for health/dental insurance for kids I don't have and pay for birth control I don't need.
What really irks me is that for those that make under $45k/year they get the same policy I have for $2-400/month, I get screwed.In addition, I have a total of only one choice for an insurance provider.
I say get rid of the mandate, let me buy insurance across state lines, let buy the coverage I want/need (ie., no coverage for kids I don't have, no birth control I don't need, no coverage for mammograms I don't need etc.).
Don't punish me for making more than $45k.
That would save me $4-5k/year.
All I need/want is a hospital-surgical policy. I don't need insurance to pay for vaccinations, doctor visits and a host of other useless so called benefits.
Since Osama Care went into effect, it has cost me more than $20k more than I would have to pay if Osama would have let me purchase what I want.
I would also like it if the hospitals operated like they did over 30 years ago. If you have no money, you don't get any care.
I am tired of paying for the useless,hopeless worthless and helpless.I make over $100k/year, yet my standard if living is not much, if any better than someone making less than half that, because of all the taxes, mandates and regulations.
Some will say I have no compassion for those less fortunate. That is right, my compassion has been taxed out of me. I could make a lot more money, but what is the point if the Govt. is going to take most of my money?
I used to help those that were less fortunate, not any more.

At 3:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rand Paul is receiving accolades for his repeal & replace draft. Let's hope the senate likes it too.
Oh, & in other news, the 9trillion debt raise is just a resolution, not a budget. No appropriations or any details. They just wanted to pass the obamacare outtahere act. Slick!

At 3:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

At 4:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fred, where this analysis breaks down is in its using common sense. Many things have been said about Trump based on common sense, such as he will leave Twitter and become presidential. And, if you read his Twitter feed, or news sources outside of Fox, you know he's tripled down on the crazy.

House Republicans voted to eliminate the things you hold dear, such as insuring people with prior conditions. The major things you saw House Republicans vote to remove are the ones you can expect to see in Trumpcare. They are GOP punch points, the top things the rank and file radical right despises. Forget Rand Paul. He's establishment for this discussion. The House even voted to remove parents keeping their kids on their plans through age 26. Where's the sense in that? Force removal of generally healthy adults, forcing them onto lesser plans?

Here's Trumpcare in a nutshell... elimination of minimum standards for healthcare plans. Poor people will be expected to buy less expensive plans (plans with poor coverage). Very likely, there will be no ccordinated plans at all, just vouchers for whatever insurance companies want to offer. And you can expect to pay through the nose for preexisting conditions, or simply not have them covered. Watch it happen.

At 4:36 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I said that exactly backward. "The major things you saw House Republicans vote to remove are the ones you can expect to NOT see in Trumpcare."

At 6:47 PM, Blogger Bob Wallace said...

Those wonderful insurance plans you had that cost you $0.49 per year. Have you checked to see what they actually covered? Their benefit caps?

Were you really covered if you needed extended expensive care? Or once you cost the insurance company serious money were they free to kick you to the curb?

Do you really long to return to the days when your option to get the money to buy the drugs that keep you alive was to put jelly jars next to cash registers around town?

At 6:57 PM, Blogger Bob Wallace said...

I think we need to pay more attention to the cost of health care and less on the cost of health insurance.

Health insurance companies under Obamacare have their profits limited. It's not like they get to put 50% of the premium in their pockets. Health insurance costs are driven by the cost of health care.

Obamacare has multiple parts designed to bring down the cost of healthcare. I'll be surprised if they survive the Republican rework. We're probably going to see the symptoms treated (possibly poorly) and the causes ignored.

At 11:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Until the admin removes their deal with big pharma ("60 minutes" episode Under the Influence) healthcare will continue to skyrocket.
When meds cost medicare $1,200.00 but VA only $175.00, it's not right. All groups can barter except the seniors & disabled.
***** RAN across this today. Calif Leno has quietly submitted through a Single Payer Plan for Californians. He promises the moon, but we all know what happens when govt locks anything down. Mercy me.

At 8:49 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you have a serious preexisting condition a repeal of Obamacare will result in you no longer being protected from having your policy cancelled.

At 11:39 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

8:49 That's where Rand Paul's bill comes in handy. Start your own co-op insurance group. Cover your arses. Stop fear mongering and get busy coming up with free market solutions.

At 1:58 PM, Blogger sky hammer said...

What I have have read is that those with pre-exsisting conditions will be able to purchase a policy just for those conditions.
I am all for that, it will lower my costs.
I don't have a problem with letting "kids" stay on your policy until age 26, I just don't want to pay for it and I shouldn't have to.
I guess I am a radical, I just want to buy the policy with the coverage I want and don't want to pay for coverage I can't use.
If you are to poor to buy insurance, the probability is that you have made bad life choices, I have no pity.
I have been taxed and regulated to death and am tired of it.I worked my butt off for nearly 20 years, didn't breed and saved early every dime I made so I could retire at 35 and buy the toys I want when I want.
Now I am being punished and have to pay for the slackers in the country.
It is just like when I went to HSU, I had to pay for the health center which was mainly for birth control and venereal diseases, I also I had to pay so students could go camping at reduced cost.
If you wan to screw yourself silly and go camping that is fine, pay for it yourself.I didn't have time for that, I needed to get through school so I could make money, to spend on my self.

At 7:11 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Start your own co-op insurance group. "

Right. People who are working 40-60 hours a week while raising a family should just start a health insurance co-op. That takes about 15 minutes and a quick read through Establishing Healthcare Co-ops for Dummies.


While we're doing that how about we set up our own fire department co-ops and police force co-ops.

It's our government, if we bother to vote. Why not use our government to make our lives simpler and easier?


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