Thursday, October 6, 2016

Why Obamacare Is Failing

It's not for the reasons you may think.

Many may have heard in four or fives states the rates for payers may go up to 50% or more. What you may not have heard when all of the states are averaged together it's only a 11% increase. The other night I watched as one news host argued, that may be nice but what about those people in those four of five states?

That is a valid talking point but so too the reason why they're getting hosed. The architects who designed the program already anticipated there would be some states who would have more sick people sign up then healthy creating deficits for insurers offering Obamacare.

So What Went Wrong?
It's when Republicans in Congress kicked the financial stool out from under the program in 2015 . "Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) led a group of Senate and House Republicans having sought to prevent additional billions in funding for the so-called risk corridor program. It could also help cripple the national health insurance program Republicans have vowed to repeal and replace. Indeed, the tactic is having an effect as roughly half of the 23 non-profit insurance plans created under the 2011 Affordable Care Act at a cost of $2.4 billion have announced they will close their doors by the end of this year, largely because of inadequate compensation for unexpected losses."

And they're not done yet. "While GOP leaders have made threats in the past to use reconciliation to repeal Obamacare, Ryan is making it clear he plans to use it when it counts. If Donald Trump is elected president and Republicans hold onto Congress, House Speaker Paul Ryan is bluntly promising to ram a partisan agenda through Capitol Hill next year, with Obamacare repeal and trillion-dollar tax cuts likely at the top of the list."

In short Congress sabotaged Obamacare by deliberately starving the program by not funding it the way it was designed. This because Congress (not the president) has the final say on the budget regarding who gets paid what. The previous Congress, president or any federal agency can pass anything they want, but if there's no funding provided all their actions become meaningless. Or as Newt Gingrich back in his day once said about the Social Security program, "let it whither on the vine".

Something to keep in mind since the next Congress could do the same thing to any program or agency they didn't like. For example The Department of Education, EPA, Medicare, Social Security, the Postal department, FDA or any of the other so-called entitlements many expressed disfavor with. All of these could be on the table. Some current off the wall representatives even suggested cutting off funds to the Whitehouse in opposition to Obama.

Some of this may sound too bizarre to happen but given today's politicians, the political climate and some of the way out comments made I wouldn't be too sure.

Politics at it's worse. Obamacare has had many wrinkles to be sure. But rather then cooperating to make it work the path chosen was to force it into failure. Before Obamacare many of these 11.7 million current enrollees didn't have any medical insurance at all. Does anyone seriously believe if Obamacare is taken away they somehow magically will? Who do you think is going to end up picking up the tab for the uninsured? The hospitals and doctors aren't going to eat the costs that's for sure.

Congress refuses to look for ways to reign in the cost of drugs. How much insurance can charge both to doctors & patients while still being able meet their profitably margins. Liability and other legal reforms. The medical device manufacturers and in a host of other areas which could lead to cost containment. They instead are taking the cowards way out by choosing to throw all of this back on us. It's crazy to think by forcing people to pay for themselves it will somehow bring down costs. It's didn't before Obamacare, why would it now?

"A full repeal means doing away with all the reforms, not just subsidy spending"

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