As first published in DelawareLiberal by ProgressivePopulist on January 2, 2014O
We're 90 days past Sebelius's near catastrophic launch. In spite of
amazing roadblocks, Republican resistance and sabotage, Republican
governor's further undermining a key element to serve the health needs
of our poorest citizens, and what our President had the honesty to
characterize as "self inflicted wounds", We've got a success here.
far, very early into the process, with a public very slow to awaken to
new healthcare opportunities, no thanks to Health and Human Services
lame marketing, 6 million of our fellow citizens now have health
insurance, most for the first time in their lives. 2 million through
the exchanges, 4 million through Medicaid. Think about it. This is
huge in a 90 day period.
This leaves an estimated 5 million
Medicaid eligible still uncovered and not likely to have this benefit
anytime soon , due to dumb and immoral strategy in Red
Republican-governed states. Still a long way to go to achieve
universal care. A Democratic sweep of state houses can solve that
Michael Moore just published a stinging critique of
ObamaCare. As a fellow single payer advocate, I agree with him but I
think Jared Bernstein's observation hits the nail on the head. Moore
has the policy right, but right now, not the politics.
heartened by single payer developments around the country, such as in
Vermont. As Michael Moore believes, the single payer movement can push
upward from progressive states. It can't happen fast enough to satisfy
me. Moore is right. To cast our health care lot with one of the most
predatory industries in America is a tragedy waiting to happen.
of my health care guru's, Maggie Mahar, reports the polls actually read
that 50% of those polled like health care reform; 35% like the ACA as
it is and 15% think it should be more liberal. 50% oppose ACA at this
According to Mahar and WP's Ezra Klein, just 0..6 %
of American's under 65 are losing their insurance purchased on the
individual market and will have to pay more than their inadequate
catastrophic coverage because of the new benefits enriched exchange
policies. A survey they report on shows that 45% of these people agreed
their old policies were inadequate. Irresponsible media reports say
there are millions and tens of millions in this category. The actual
number of those eligible to secure alternative catastrophic policies is
estimated at around 500,000 people. And over 70% of them will qualify
for government subsidies, bringing their premiums way down. These
subsidies average $5,548 annually.
According to Mahar, a health
policy expert, ..."29% of those who are losing their policies make too
much to be eligible for subsidies, " and were premium-raped by these
catastrophic policies. 15-30% of them suffered the stigma of
preexisting conditions. These insurers spend 30% of their premiums on
marketing, advertising, executive salaries and bonuses and other
overhead costs and were infamous for cancelling policies like a
revolving door, jacking up premiums and denying payments to providers.
Prior to ObamaCare, these jackals turned over 35 % of their their
policy holders each year. You did not hear any of this from the media,
did you? They were too damned lazy to do their homework to give you the
Mahar estimates that the catastrophic policy holders have
three choices:l. Go without insurance while they can. 2. Pay an average
of $135 a month for coverage of 57% of their bills. 3. Buy from the
exchange; a person in their 20's who makes too much to qualify for a
subsidy can by an average bronze plan for about $185 per month. You do
the math. Which would you do in their shoes. Of course, most will
spend the extra $50 a month (remember, they make $45,000/year +) to get a
real policy. This is why the industry is reporting the private
catastrophic policies are not selling. The market the Republican's like
to worship is working in this case. Clearly, the consumer demand for
ObamaCare is there and moving with great momentum. Soon we will have to
move onto other issues including needed provider staffing levels and
the out of control though improving cost escalation among health care
providers. This blog will soon address these issues.
ObamaCare, a qualified success, is here to stay America. Get used to it.