F*&king stupidity – an update. :-)

I just thought I’d update you on the latest f*&king stupidity from the US about ObamaCare…cos I know you are all interested. 🙂 I’m thinking that after you read this you might think stupidity is not the right word.

Since yesterday, I have learned that the US version of our Medicare is a joint state and federally-funded programme called Medicaid and it is only for the lowest income earners…and I mean low. A woman who earned more that $1200 a month wasn’t eligible, for example. That’s $14,400 a year, to save you doing the maths. 🙂 And ObamaCare doesn’t kick in until a higher income level, so there is a whole group of people who don’t fit into either system….in fact about 8 million apparently. So, to cover this gap, the federal government has said they’ll fully fund an increase to the Medicaid programme for 3 years and, after that, the states will take on an increased share of the extra costs, building up to a maximum of 10% by 2020. So just to clarify, Medicaid is jointly funded by the state and federal governments of America, and the expansion of the programme will be fully funded by the federal government for 3 years and funded 90% by them after that.

Now, here are a few point from a report done by the American Academy of Family Physicians….

1) If all 50 states implemented the Medicaid expansion, it would cover an additional 21.6 million of the 41.2 million currently uninsured adults (or 52%).

2)The additional cost of implementing the Medicaid expansion is estimated to be only a 2.8 percent increase from what states would have spent between 2014 and 2022 without the health reform law.

2.8% increase in costs to give healthcare cover to an additional 21.6 million people…sounds a no-brainer right?

Wrong!!!! 26 states have indicated they will not sign up for the increased funding…anyone care to guess which party is in government in each of these states?

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5 responses to “F*&king stupidity – an update. :-)

  1. The most up to date projections by the non partisan Congressional Budget Office is that even with the Affordable Care Act in operation some 30 million people will not have health insurance even by 2022.

    Following the Supreme Court ruling that it was unconstitutional for the federal govt. to impose expanded Medicaid upon states the CBO calculated that the net result of states not complying would be to leave 3 million low income people from gaining coverage.

    In other words the ACA was going to leave 27 million uninsured, after the SC ruling they amended that to 30 million.

  2. Hiya Colin, I’m not sure I get your point. The ACA is going to leave 27 million people uninsured…but how many more is it going to get insured who aren’t insured now? According to the CBO, ‘Compared with prior law, the ACA is now estimated by CBO and JCT to reduce the number of nonelderly people without health insurance coverage by 30 million to 33 million in 2016’. So 27 million people may be left uninsured but at least 30 million more will be insured.

  3. Yes. A sizeable number will if people sign up on the healthcare exchanges or they get the extended Medicaid in 1/2 the states. No doubt. The jury is out on how costly it will be. How people who already have insurance will be impacted. Will their costs go up to balance out the extra demands placed on the system by bringing the ACA online. Employers dropping healthcare plans from their benefits package is one example. A small proportion perhaps but significant if you are in such a company. Also employers not adding to payroll in order to remain under the threshold for having to cover staff or pay penalties. Quite a few companies have also cut hours to avoid meeting the full-time hours quota which requires healthcare plans too.

    The bottom line is it is unclear who will be winners and losers in the whole deal.

    • Hiya Colin

      I have also heard counter arguments for each of the points you raise. For example, I saw an interview with a hospital administrator who said the cost of increased coverage will be significantly countered by people getting into the medical system earlier, thus decreasing the over-all cost of treatment and the amount of treatment done in A&E. They also said it would help those already insured because hospitals recouped A&E costs through the insurance fees they charge the privately insured. I also saw an interview where the person, for somewhere like the CBO, said part-time job numbers were actually falling, not rising. But, you are 100% correct, no-one knows for sure what the impact of this will be and who the winners and loser will be. But isn’t that true for just about every piece of government legislation ever?

      The point here, and this was probably clearer in the first post than the second, is that this piece of legislation has been passed by a duly elected government, taken to an election by that government, survived 40 votes to strike it down as well as a Supreme Court challenge. Like it or not, it has come through the democratic process. What the Republicans are doing is not supported by the majority of Americans, shown by both the election result last year and current polling. The US either is a democracy or it isn’t. I think there is a huge principle at stake here.

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