2017-MAY: The final attempt to
is passed in the House:
This topic is continued below from Part 8 at the previous page
2017-MAY-01: Some Twitter comments about ressurection of the American Health Care Act of 2017:
Nick Gourevitch (@nickgourevitch) tweeted: "Powerful statement: 10 popular leading patient orgs oppose AHCA because it 'would leave millions with inadequate, unaffordable care'."
Chrisopher Hayes (@chrislhayes) tweeted: "Sean Spicer says the AHCA will be better for ppl w[ith] pre-existing conditions. On the other: March of Dimes says it won't. Who to trust!?!"
- Dylan Scott (@dylanlscott) tweeted: "Health care lobbyist who has been reliable throughout #AHCA debate thinks House R[epublican]s are within 6 votes."
- Andy Slavitt (@ASlavitt) tweeted: "Would the @WhiteHouse staff please mind showing him the actual AHCA plan? It raises premiums, deductibles, & removes pre-ex[isting] protections."
2017-MAY-04: House holds vote on latest version of AHCA (Trumpcare):
Republican leaders have been tweaking the bill in an attempt to gain the few extra votes needed to pass it in the House. They rushed through arrangements to hold the vote before the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) was able to analyze the amended bill's impact on americans. This means that the Representatives will be voting on the bill without knowing the true effects of the bill on the American public: They will not know how many tens of millions of Americans will lose their insurance, the changes in premiums, the effect on the federal deficit, etc. They will be voting blind.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-California, issued a prophecy, saying:
"Forcing a vote without a CBO score shows that Republicans are terrified of the public learning the full consequences of their plan to push Americans with pre-existing conditions into the cold. But tomorrow, House Republicans are going to tattoo this moral monstrosity to their foreheads, and the American people will hold them accountable."
Under procedural rules, a vote cannot be taken in the Senate until after the CBO report is issued. 1
Several experts in the health care industry have expressed misgivings about the impacts of the atest verson of the health care bill:
- Subsidies under Obamacare which are given to people with lower incomes or who are closer to retirement age would be lowered. Their out-of-pocket cost will soar and they may no longer be able to afford insurance.
- Incentives under Obamacare encourage young persons to buy insurance. These incentives have been lowering premiums generally, because people in this age range are typically of good health and do not draw on medical services as much as older people. The incentives would be reduced in the new bill, thus applying upward pressure on premiums for everyone.
- The bill will restrict access to Medicaid, thus withdrawing health care from many poor people and students.
The national Children's Hospital Association spoke out against this part of the bill, saying:
"The American Health Care Act will move the Medicaid program to a per capita cap system and limit future federal funding to the states, risking significant reductions in the Medicaid budgets providing the care for over 30 million children. If enacted in its current form, the bill could negatively impact children’s ability to get the necessary care required for their health."
Dr. Andrew W. Gurman, president of the American Medical Association (AMA) issued a statement to Congress saying:
"The replacement bill, as written, would reverse the coverage gains achieved under the ACA, causing many Americans to lose the health care coverage they have come to depend upon."
David Cutler, professor of applied economics at Harvard University and former administrator at the National Institutes of Health, commented:
"The thing that is completely gone is the tax increase on high-income people. You need to then pay for that somehow, so they pay for it in two ways: One is with really, really drastic Medicaid cuts and second is by reducing the subsidies for people to buy coverage. ... Huge Medicaid cuts, huge subsidy cuts for low- and middle-income and big tax cuts for high-income people. That is the strategy. ..."
For all the talk of 'death spirals' in the Affordable Care Act, this is perfectly designed to produce 'death spirals'. Given the price, anyone who is at all healthy will opt out. The subsidies don’t make up for it. So, what you are going to see is this continual erosion of the market.
And that, in turn, will not be attractive to health insurance providers."
Matt Fiedler, fellow in economic studies at the Center for Health Policy at the Brookings Institution, said:
"Bottom line: you are looking at a much more uncertain environment," Fiedler said. "One thing we have learned in the last few years is that insurers often are just not willing to participate in market where there is uncertainty." 1
In short, many people not be able to afford health care. They will not receive preventative services. Maternity care will not be provided. More will get seriously sick. Many will die. Fortunately for members of Congress, the Representatives and Senators will have their separate universal health coverage continue unchanged. The replacement of ObamaCare with TrumpCare will not affect their personal health care.
Webmaster's comment [heavy bias alert]:
A single-payer plan, like the health care plans in the UK and Canada, still remain a theoretical option for the distant future of the U.S. If implemented, it would probably result in a drastic reduction in the total cost of health care to the levels found in Canada. Everyone would be automatically enrolled and have access to care. Life expectancy should then increase; public's acceptance of health care should also increase, both the maternal death rate and infant mortality should drop over time. It would be a really pro-life solution. Also it would be a solution to health care that would be compatible with the Golden Rule: to treat others as one would wish to be treated by others.
However, it would probably require a Democratic president and a majority of Democrats in both the House and Senate to pass such a law. Perhaps it might materialize sometimes in the 2020's.
2017-MAY-04: The House narrowly passed the most recent version of the American Health Care Act:
The following information sources were used to prepare and update the above
essay. The hyperlinks are not necessarily still active today.
Benjamin Siegel & John Parkinson, "House to hold vote on GOP health care bill Thursday," ABC News, 2017-MAY-03, at: http://abcnews.go.com/
Thomas kaplan & Robert Pear, "House Passes Measure to Repeal and Replace the Affordable Care Act," New York Times, 2017-MAY-04, at: https://www.nytimes.com/
Copyright © 2017 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Originally posted on: 2017-APR-05
Author: B.A. Robinson