Insurance companies would be required to tell customers how much their premiums increase because of the Affordable Care Act under legislation nearing final passage in the General Assembly. The House voted Thursday, largely along party lines, to approve Senate Bill 236. Because the House made minor changes, the bill must go back to the Senate.
Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., urged her colleagues during a speech on the floor of the House of Representatives today to repeal the Affordable Care Act before it “literally” kills Americans. Let’s repeal this failure before it literally kills women, kills children, kills senior citizens,” said Bachmann. Bachmann’s hyperbolic plea echoes charges leveled by Republicans prior to the health care bill’s passage, when many in the GOP claimed that the bill would lead to rationed care – and early death – for senior citizens, disabled Americans, and other vulnerable elements of American society.
An massive study by three congressional committees entitled “The Price of Obamacare’s Broken Promises,” reveals that Obamacare could increase health insurance premiums by over 200 percent and render insurance coverage unaffordable for millions of Americans. Broadly, the new report declares that Obamacare “breaks its core promise” to make healthcare coverage affordable.
Author reproduces a chart from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, which is an attempt to draw up the most basic, simple questions to determine eligibility for insurance subsidies or Medicaid. Problem, is, it’s really not simple at all. It’s complexity is a natural extension of the law’s structure. The Affordable Care Act grows two different insurance programs, Medicaid and the individual market. Information on income levels is needed to figure out who qualifies for which one.
Arkansas state senators Jonathan Dismang and David Sanders, with two colleagues from the state House, believe they have come up with an alternative to Obamacare Medicaid expansion, as laid out in the law. Their idea is to use privatization to avoid the proliferation of government bureaucracy that conservatives vehemently oppose.
How will Obamacare affect businesses’ bottom line? When it comes to worker hours, the response by companies will probably be mixed, companies with larger profit margins that already provide health coverage to most of its employees might not have much of a problem. But for businesses with slim margins and a low-wage, high turnover workforce – the fast food biz, for instance – there may well be an incentive to rely on more part-timers to keep costs down. When it comes to prices, in many cases, the higher cost of insurance will most likely make its way to the consumer in some form, the firm argues. But the bigger picture is more complex, and businesses will have to make individualized decisions.
A look at the difficulties faced by the D.C. Health Benefits Exchange, perhaps the smallest of all the Obamacare healthcare insurance exchanges. That means a more manageable population, but also precludes the District from some of the choices available in bigger states.
Health officials said Obamacare law deserves credit for providing 71 million Americans with private health insurance at least one free service, like a flu shot or mammogram, in 2011 and 2012. The Department of Health and Human Services also said about 34 million Americans in Medicare and Medicare Advantage received annual checkups or other services with no out-of-pocket costs because of provisions in the Affordable Care Act.
Starting in 2014, insurance companies will have to remit $8 billion to the federal treasury. The tax climbs to $11.3 billion in 2015 and 2016, to $13.9 billion in 2017, and to $14.3 billion thereafter. The author believes the result will be that a family will pay a total of $5,000 more in premiums, and small businesses nearly $7,000, over the next 10 years.
A pay raise promised under the Affordable Care Act (“Obamacare”) for primary care doctors administering to the nation’s poor covered by Medicaid health insurance is nearly three months behind schedule and may take another three months before it appears, according to Medicaid directors.