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@haroldpollack A few of my patients who needed it have insurance today. One likely needs to be in the hospital and has been waiting for it.
@nskarnik
That's what it's all been about.
WASHINGTON — Millions of Americans will begin receiving health insurance coverage under the Affordable Care Act on Wednesday after years of contention and a rollout hobbled by delays and technical problems. The decisively new moment in the effort to overhaul the country’s health care system will test the law’s central premise: that extending coverage to far more Americans will improve the nation’s health and help many avoid crippling medical bills.

Starting Wednesday, health insurance companies can no longer deny coverage to people with pre-existing conditions and cannot charge higher premiums to women than to men for the same coverage. In most cases, insurers must provide a standard set of benefits prescribed by federal law and regulations. And they cannot set dollar limits on what they spend on “essential health benefits” for a policyholder. [...]

“I feel a huge sense of relief,” said Katie R. Norvell, 33, a music therapist in St. Louis, who has been uninsured for three and a half years and has a pre-existing gynecological condition, endometriosis. She signed up Dec. 22 for a midlevel silver plan offered by Coventry Health Care, owned by Aetna, and has already begun making doctor’s appointments.

“With coverage,” she said, “I can be my best self. Health insurance won’t control my job choices.”

There's also, of course, this:
Though this is a milestone for the law, it is unlikely to end the constant partisan battles that began even before its passage nearly four years ago. Late Tuesday, Justice Sonia Sotomayor temporarily blocked the Obama administration from forcing some religious-affiliated groups to provide coverage of birth control or face penalties.
The law still has powerful enemies, like the Republican U.S. House of Representatives. But it also has more than six million new beneficiaries, by Kossack Brainwrap's ongoing count: 2,104,332 in private plans and 4,002,609 in Medicaid/CHIP. For everyone in existing plans, annual and lifetime caps are gone. Some basic stuff—like hospitalizations, prescription drugs and mental health—now has to be covered.

From now on, every attempt by Republicans to repeal the law means trying to take away those benefits and all the benefits that have already kicked in for millions of people. And that changes the politics of this law immeasurably.

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 09:46 AM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Two friends of mine last night (30+ / 0-)

    said they could "take off the bubblewrap" finally at midnight, no longer living in a fragile state of fear.

    I just LOVE this!

    The number of children and teens killed by guns in one year would fill 134 classrooms of 20 students each. (Chlldren's Defense Fund, 2013)

    by nzanne on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 10:04:00 AM PST

    •  I disagree (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      createpeace, skillet, VPofKarma

      GOP proposal: Die and decrease the surplus population.

      Some men aren't looking for anything logical, like money. They can't be bought, bullied, reasoned or negotiated with. Some men just want to watch the world burn.

      by Omir the Storyteller on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 12:02:02 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Same ole plan the GOP has always had: (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TopCat

        ability to buy health insurance across state lines, tort reform, health savings accounts.  In other words, the way things were before the ACA with worse choices and even more chance for personal bankruptcy.

        "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

        by SueDe on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 04:50:33 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  um . . . . . (6+ / 0-)
    it is unlikely to end the constant partisan battles that began even before its passage nearly four years ago. Late Tuesday, Justice Sonia Sotomayor temporarily blocked the Obama administration
    I'm pretty sure that Sotomayor has ZERO partisan opposition to Obama or ACA.

    Just a guess.

    In the end, reality always wins.

    by Lenny Flank on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 10:32:12 AM PST

  •  Somebody tell Sonia Sotomayor (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LillithMc, Pinto Pony, Lencialoo

    Justice Blocks Contraception Mandate on Insurance in Suit by Nuns
    http://www.nytimes.com/...

    Politico:

    The emergency order issued Tuesday night applies only to the Denver facility but any further ruling from the court could have wide ranging repercussions. Nearly 100 for-profit and non-profit institutions have filed lawsuits over the Affordable Care Act’s contraception coverage requirement, arguing that it requires them to violate their religious beliefs against the use of contraception.
    Contrast that with this action by the ACLU:
    ACLU Sues Bishops on Behalf of Pregnant Woman Denied Care at Catholic Hospital
    The American Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU of Michigan have filed a lawsuit on behalf of a pregnant woman who miscarried and was denied appropriate medical treatment because the only hospital in her county is required to abide by religious directives.
    This isn't about nuns.
    This is what happens when Democrats appoint lukewarm "reasonable" justices.
    Democrats need to appoint progressive advocate justices.
    •  Well (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Pinto Pony, Lencialoo, scamperdo

      She only extended the time to get a more complete decision.
      Great to hear women are being defended from the negatives of their medical treatment.  I hope all those who suffer from the new laws in all the red states limiting their health care options will get news coverage and lawsuits if appropriate.  Women can die from some of these new laws.
      Same for the historic treatment of women by the Catholic church that is the same today as yesterday.  Too many Catholics on the Supreme Court.

    •  That's a little premature (0+ / 0-)

      Unless you have reason based on the pleadings before her and the text of the order to believe her decision was based on anything other than her analysis of the law and facts before her.

      If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

      by marykk on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 10:42:21 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Money (6+ / 0-)

      Any organization demanding a waiver needs to file a public application and be listed so that anyone making donations can check that list.  We shoudn't fund organizations which deny women access to contraception.  Make it a matter or record.

      In most of our gerrymandered districts, our votes mean little or nothing.  We need to weaponize every purchase and donation we make and we need much more robust and comprehensive tools to enable it, such as the buycott app for our phones.

      William Hamilton practices Law and is a writer and community activist in the Charleston, SC area. He can reached through www.wjhamilton.com

      by wjhamilton29464 on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 10:51:49 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  here the question I ask (0+ / 0-)

      If they are so concerned about the morality of birth control, i.e. it will encourage premarital sex and sex during marriage for fun, as well as prostitution, then what aobut old people who are being covered for conditions that are 'old age.'

      I think, we, as a country of Christians should sue to put back in lifetime limits.  I mean if someone has a chronic disease that needs aggressive management, we have to pay the cost through higher insurance premiums.

      And why are these people so gung ho to stay alive?  Because they are evil.  They are murders or rapists or pedophiles who are desperately afraid to meet their makers.  It is the only thing that makes sense.  Like the whores who expect us to subsidize the sex industry through free contraceptives, these old people expect us to keep them alive so they can continue to molest children.

      So why not, say at age 50, start a tally.  Once a person gets to some reasonable figure, say $100K, cut them off.  Send them to meet their maker and get their just reward.

      This is why religious nuts are hypocrites.  There is plenty in the law that encourages bad behavior.  They just like picking on women.

  •  "I can be my best self" (0+ / 0-)

    Good grief -- health insurance does not guarantee: health care, healthiness, or happiness.  

    I'm glad she has health care insurance but we have hardly entered the promised land.  This type of propaganda in an article turns an interesting policy discussion into something non-serious and sets up too high of expectations for what this law does.

    •  The full quote was (13+ / 0-)
      “With coverage,” she said, “I can be my best self. Health insurance won’t control my job choices.
      This health care most definitely does allow greater freedom of choice.

      The number of children and teens killed by guns in one year would fill 134 classrooms of 20 students each. (Chlldren's Defense Fund, 2013)

      by nzanne on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 10:44:30 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Those statements don't connect (0+ / 0-)

        Earlier in the article she noted that she has been without health insurance for 2.5 years.  Following on that, I don't get her comment: "Health insurance won't control my job choices."  Based on the way the author strung the quotes together it doesn't seem like health insurance controlled her job choices in the past. It sounds like there is an interesting story lurking behind the article, but the author needs a basic course in logic because the quotes the author pulled from the interview of person don't connect.  They seem like sound bites to me.  It's the sound bites I find discouraging -- selling too much expectation.

        •  You really don't get it (6+ / 0-)
          Following on that, I don't get her comment: "Health insurance won't control my job choices."
          Wow - if you don't get that you don't understand the basic stuff about this law and how it changes people's lives.

          No wonder you think this diary is propaganda - you don't have a clue.

          •  No, I don't get it (0+ / 0-)

            I don't get how the statements connect.  Call me clueless and send me a ticket to an ACA re-education workshop.  If in the past, health insurance impacted her choice of jobs, then that implies she took a job for health care insurance -- she didn't have health insurance for 2.5 years so she must not have in the past taken a job for health insurance.  But this is a distraction from original point that "I can be my best self" is not a serious comment about an insurance law.

            •  Well, in case you missed it (4+ / 0-)

              we have been in a deep recession with very few jobs  available. As we come out of this, people see they have options once again and they are not worried about the insurance issues should they choose to change jobs or create a small business of their own.

              "Compassion is the keen awareness of the interdependence of all things." Thomas Merton

              by createpeace on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 12:51:25 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  To make it simple: if she has a choice of two jobs (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                rsmpdx, sulthernao

                ...and one is lousy but offers health insurance & the other is good but doesn't, she can take the good job & keep the insurance that she bought on the exchange. She doesn't have look ONLY for jobs that offer health benefits or stay in a bad job (if she gets one) because it has health insurance.

          •  Its all about control (0+ / 0-)

            The author quoted a woman who said:

            "With coverage,” she said, “I can be my best self. Health insurance won’t control my job choices.”

            I had always wondered at the business community's recalcitrance to embrace healthcare reform. You would think that not having to worry about employees health coverage would be a no-brainer for a business owner.

            It would also enable responsible business owners to be competitive with competitors who didn't offer health plans. And think how much easier labor contracts would be with health care not even on the table......

            But I realized employer health care is just one more way to keep the working class in subjection. I might over analyze things, but maybe employer health care is just another area the bosses can subjugate employees.

            For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

            by Grey Fedora on Fri Jan 03, 2014 at 11:07:39 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  Alive (14+ / 0-)

      This law keeps people alive who would die.  I consider that a pretty high expectation met.

      As for the tea parlor debating society about France or England doing it better, have at it.  Our project signed up over 400 families for Obamacare in December in a deep red state.  One paid navigator making $14 per hour for four hours a day, five days a week, who worked 9 hours a day, six days a week.  A half dozen newly trained volunteer Navigators and CACs, working in the teeth of the holidays.  IT support people and other volunteers.  A total budget, including in kind donations of less than four thousand dollars, including donated space.

      I distributed over 1500 leaflets personally, the cost of printing which I paid for myself.

      We worked our ass off.  It wasn't easy.  This is South Carolina.  We got things done.

      People are going to live instead of die or go bankrupt.

      That is Change I can believe in.  Not bullshit that fills the air, of which liberals have an unending amount of.

      William Hamilton practices Law and is a writer and community activist in the Charleston, SC area. He can reached through www.wjhamilton.com

      by wjhamilton29464 on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 11:02:11 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I'd be happier if I could walk without pain. (2+ / 0-)

      I know who to see, I know who would do the surgery. I just can't afford to access the care.

      There are probably plenty of people like me. Unless you have been in chronic pain you do not know how happy relief can make you.

      When you come to find how essential the comfort of a well-kept home is to the bodily strength and good conditions, to a sound mind and spirit, and useful days, you will reverence the good housekeeper as I do above artist or poet, beauty or genius.

      by Alexandra Lynch on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 12:03:51 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  My company (0+ / 0-)

    provides us with very good insurance, got a notice yesterday that, they are changing insurance providers and "major changes" in our insurance are coming. A mandatory meeting has been scheduled. I sure hope we are not about to experience one of those GOP horror stories I have been trying to convince everybody don't exist.

    If you are not the lead dog, the view never changes.

    by RepresentUsPlease on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 10:34:32 AM PST

    •  There are many unpleasantries... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      createpeace, Sherri in TX

      ...that you might be running into without being one of the GOP horror stories.  

      If you previously haven't been making employee contributions to premiums, paying annual deductibles before coverage kicked in, or having to have everything subjected to preauthorization, you might be looking at one or all of those things.

      "Nonsense!" said Alice, very loudly and decidedly, and the Queen was silent.

      by RIposte on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 10:44:43 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  When we had insurance (5+ / 0-)

      through my husband's company, there were "major changes" and new providers every couple of years. It was never good news- hope yours is not bad.

    •  They exist. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      scamperdo

      My 'affordable care' - is now more than 13% of our AGI. Acording to the afordable care act - that's 'not affordable'. But that's what happens when you're self employed, your insurance (as bad as it was) is cancelled, and the only low priced 'bronze' option is more than double your old rate.

      Oh yeah - I live in NorCal.

      I'm happy the uninsured are now insured. I'm just sorry we didn't go 'medicare for all'.

      No - we didn't qualify for subsidies - Yes, we sat on hold for more than six hours - Yes we talked to real live people at CalCare, the insurance company, and a certified agent. The answer? - "Wow... yeah, that sux. Maybe they'll fix that... I hope they fix that. At least... you can write off some of that in your taxes..."

      The GOP Prime Directive: Be Silent - Consume - DIE!

      by Lance Bearer on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 10:47:31 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Well okay but . . . (5+ / 0-)

        you didn't really have insurance before. You get what you pay for.

        •  I beg to differ. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          rsmpdx

          We did have insurance - with a high deductible. It was always a crap shoot. We HAD a major medical problem. We maxed our deductible, then the 'crappy' insurance kicked in - and paid more than our premiums for the previous five years.

          So - yeah. It was a calculated risk. And it paid off.

          Unfortunately, AETNA decided to cancel those policies in California.

          Please - don't presume to know what I 'had'.

          The GOP Prime Directive: Be Silent - Consume - DIE!

          by Lance Bearer on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 11:00:12 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Yeah it sucks that the 8.5% of income (0+ / 0-)

        limit is only for those under 400% of the FPL.

        However, you will be able to apply for catastrophic coverage which is similar to your bad insurance plan that was cancelled, except for the fact that now if you really get sick you won't be on the hook after the deductible.

        Checked it out.

        I just looked up on CoveredCalifornia, there does seem to be catastrophic plans that are a bit cheaper (maybe ~$100 cheaper).

        Another possible option, since you are self-employed, is to enroll via SHOP plans. You may be eligible for a large tax rebate to help with the cost. I'm not sure if you will qualify for SHOP enrollment, but it you can read about it here (PDF).

        •  Yup, already checked it all out... (0+ / 0-)

          The change to allow 'possible' exemptions - came at the last minute. Literally - and we spent six hours on hold trying to get it.  

          We're in the process to see if we 'qualify' for an exemption - but we've been told by CalCare - By an independent agent - and by a human being at the insurance we've actually bought - that "We're not really sure how this is going to work. Probably - you won't know until you file taxes next year."

          Yup - A whole year of paying full price.

          Despite what the sites say.

          Believe me, we're working on it.  Best we're told we can hope for - is buying a catastrophic plan that is right at 10%. STILL more than double are old plan - and the VALUE is the same, or worse.  

          Compare  6,000 dollars in annual premium, with an 8,0000 dollar deductible. To a 12,000 dollar annual premium, with a 6,000 dollar deductible. (round numbers).  The 'gamble' is that you'll have enough savings to cover the huge deductible, vs paying UP FRONT to have a lower deductible. Of course, if nothing happens each year, the 'better' policy - is more lucrative for the insurance company.  

          The insurance companies have figured their angles carefully.

          But thanks for making the effort to post the info. It's a very nice gesture. People saying "You get what you pay for" - seem to have forgotten the whole purpose of insurance is that the company is gambling that you DON'T GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR. That's their business model. And WE are gambling - that we suffer so severely - we get AT LEAST if not MORE than we pay for.

          Which is what happened to us, with the 'crappy' insurance. Yeah, we actually did get more than what we paid for. I'd rather have not gone through the medical and emotional trauma though.

          I hate insurance.

          The GOP Prime Directive: Be Silent - Consume - DIE!

          by Lance Bearer on Fri Jan 03, 2014 at 10:07:09 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  My employer puts our insurance out for bid. (4+ / 0-)

      As such, our plan changed from United Healthcare to Cigna as of today.  Our coverage, which is subject to collective bargaining, is exactly the same.

      “It is the job of the artist to think outside the boundaries of permissible thought and dare say things that no one else will say."—Howard Zinn

      by musiclady on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 10:52:07 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Every company (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cardinal, askew, createpeace, VPofKarma

      has changes with insurance providers all the time.

      That's nothing new.

      Those changes come from the insurance companies - get that straight.

      •  exactly. (4+ / 0-)

        It's unfortunate that the GOP can scapegoat the ACA for a whole year's worth of the types of insurance changes that -- as any person who has worked for a large company knows -- happen all the time.

        I work for a wealthy private university that prioritizes employee benefits -- yet, in my 11 years here, I've had 4 different insurers, each with progressively worse benefits for what I'm paying.  

        Hope you fall on your burger and fries.

        by cardinal on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 10:59:22 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Healthcare cost increases have slowed (6+ / 0-)

          My company changed to a higher deductible with the same carrier (Anthem) a couple of times in past years, when the annual increase was over 10% for the group policy. However, the increases have been <3% each of the past 2 years and even less for 2014. So no change to a higher deductible has had to have been considered for some time, much less a switch to a different policy. The ACA is at least partially, if not primarily, responsible for the slowing healthcare cost increases. More and more small business owners will become aware of this as 2014 rates for their group policies come in.

          Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that 'my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.' ― Isaac Asimov

          by GoodGod on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 11:31:59 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  Democratic Chicken Poop (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pickandshovel, Nance, ybruti

    We can expect the surviving Blue Dogs to run from everything and say anything which means nothing.  In my state 300 thousand people didn't get the Medicaid expansion today in South Carolina.  As a consequence about 1319 people will die in our state over the next 12 months.  We need to stop the games and call the people who made this choice for us what they are, killers. Thousands more will become maimed and disabled as well, becoming the burdens on public charity and governmetn programs these very people claim to hate.  They're smart enough to know this and they deny it, there fore they are liars as well as killers.  They do this as part of a consistent pattern which the understand and perpetuate with makes them cons and frauds.  They have names, businesses and donors.  If we make sterile theoretical debates about policy while these killers, liars, cons and frauds we deserve to lose.  If the Democrats we've managed to elect can't say that, we don't need to listen to them any longer.  People are dying now in South Carolina and we need to proceed as if we care.  If our Democrats don't fight, they don't need our money, votes or volunteer time.  We must be clear.

    William Hamilton practices Law and is a writer and community activist in the Charleston, SC area. He can reached through www.wjhamilton.com

    by wjhamilton29464 on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 10:48:30 AM PST

  •  The Death Panels kick in today, (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    marykk, boran2, Sherri in TX

    so I'm saying a little prayer for my grandpa, hoping that he passes his physical.

    Hope you fall on your burger and fries.

    by cardinal on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 10:54:14 AM PST

  •  As many articulate and assertive people as (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Capt Crunch, createpeace, VPofKarma

    possible should be recruited to talk about their successes on the ACA publicly and often.  There is a wall of noise against it and WE we have to get fucking LOUDER AND LOUDER.

    "The soil under the grass is dreaming of a young forest, and under the pavement the soil is dreaming of grass."--Wendell Berry

    by Wildthumb on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 10:57:49 AM PST

  •  Sense of relief (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    marykk, VPofKarma, rsmpdx

    I too feel a sense of relief that that I do not have to pay ~$2k per month for health insurance.  We qualified and have been approved for Medi-Cal.  

    The only fly in our ointment is that while the approval was given by a county agent in person on 6 Dec. we still have no paper or plastic item or even a number to give healthcare providers.  It is an article of trust in the government that all will work out before we need it.  

    It has been a long fight to get this program started and am proud to have helped.  I agree it will not be eliminated.  

    I feel sorry for the people in the red states who will be denied care.  Hopefully, enough voters in those states will realize what they have done and change their government.

  •  It's now cheaper (0+ / 0-)

    to cover me and my husband than it was to cover just him, and my daughter, who has a small income that affects our household income, is back on Medicare with her siblings.

    Getting insured was a pretty easy process once I settled down and did the work. And my hold time (WA state) was short - shorter than a tech support call for my son's computer.

    On the other hand, I have a friend who is tearing her hair out because she has been locked out of the website and can't get through on the phone (also WA). She doesn't deal with process well. I'm going to offer to step in and help her.

    My heart goes out to people who under a lot of stress or dealing with emotional and/or mental issues -- this sort of process to get care can be unraveling.

    Still, and regardless of those who have said, "You single-payer people have been heard," I will continue to push for single payer medical care. It's far less hassle and helps control medical costs. And frees up money for dental care, which often isn't included or completely covered in socialized medicine.

    The money is there - it's just locked up in the bloated defense budget.

  •  Big picture focus needed as glitches arise (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Elizaveta, Capt Crunch, VPofKarma, rsmpdx

    As the new policies take effect, and people start to use them, there will be technical glitches at the so-called back end. I am going to use my new plan in January and expect there to be bumpiness when it comes to claims filed.

    Republicans will seize on these sorts of problems and once again try to conflate technical issues during the "debugging" period with the whole concept of a national health care system. We (i.e. ACA supporters) need to help keep people focused on the big picture of the ACA so that whether or not a bill gets resolved in January or later is recognized for what it is, a technical glitch and not a "trainwreck" (to use the word Republicans love to use every time Obamacare is mentioned).

    Ginny Mayer, Ph.D. Democrat CA State Senate Candidate - SD-35 (Orange County)

    by Ginny Mayer on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 12:31:45 PM PST

    •  Max Baucus was the first to use the term (0+ / 0-)

      "train wreck."  I'll be glad when he's shipped off to China.

      "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

      by SueDe on Wed Jan 01, 2014 at 06:40:52 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  >9M covered, ~5M excluded by GOP death panels (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ybruti, Sherri in TX, Mokurai

    Here's what I posted on FB this morning. Thanks to folks at DailyKos for the data.

    Today over NINE MILLION more people have health insurance due to the ACA: 2.1M purchased on the exchanges, 3.9M Medicaid/CHIP enrollments, and 3.1M people under 26 who are now on their parents' policies. Also, an unknown number were able to purchase directly or through agents due to reforms and competition caused by the ACA. There's no way to know that number, but even without it, there are more than nine million now covered.

    But... nearly FIVE MILLION people who would have been eligible for Medicaid/CHIP under the ACA were denied it -- these are mostly working poor with children. Why? Because Republican governors and/or state legislators in 25 states refused to permit Medicaid expansion. The economic arguments against Medicaid expansion were nonsense -- it was a coordinated policy as part of their general goal to try to prevent people from getting health insurance under the ACA. Five million people... and some of them are going to die due to lack of health care. Under the ACA, medical care decisions are made by doctors, not the government, and not (as so often happened under the old system) by profit-motivated insurance company officials. Those who denied Medicaid expansion are the only actual "government death panels".

    Oh, well. Let's rejoice in the 9M+ who now have coverage thanks to the ACA. One of my hopes for this year is that the number of people who can get basic health insurance will increase dramatically as the hold-out states see the light & as more people sign up through exchanges or through insurance agents. Signups can continue until the end of March, this year only. After that, there will be a fall free signup period like most employer plans use.

    This would have been far simpler -- and cheaper -- if people could have paid to be covered directly by Medicare, which has a far lower overhead than insurance companies. But insurance companies supported the ACA & they wouldn't have backed direct Medicaid signups. So like so much in life, the result was a political compromise that caused lots of complications. But nine million people covered shows that it was well worth the effort.

  •  I have a feeling (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sherri in TX

    That a lot of businesses will become religious in 2014

  •  Medicaid expansion (0+ / 0-)

    Tom Corbett of Pa. wants federal money intended for Medicaid to be spent on "private" insurance policies for the people that qualify for medicaid.  He also wants to charge these same poor people a monthly fee and force them to prove they are looking for work, to be eligible for insurance.  I wonder how long it will take him to force drug testing for approval.

    http://www.reuters.com/...

    "In addition to imposing monthly premiums on Medicaid recipients, Corbett's proposal would also require able-bodied Medicaid recipients to show they have actively sought work."

  •  F'in Supreme Court (0+ / 0-)

    What Roberts giveth, Roberts taketh away, with his BS 'no coercion' opinion. Since when did federal law (Supremacy Clause anyone?) become something states could opt-out of?

    Have no idea why Breyer and Kagan concurred in that; my entirely unsupported speculation is it was horse trading to get Roberts to go along with upholding the mandate.

    How many more millions could have been covered if all states expanded Medicaid - 5? 10? We must never forget one of the main problems of the ACA is that Roberts kneecapped part of it from the start.

  •  Geez... (0+ / 0-)
    Happy Health Insurance Day!
    Could you be a bigger corporate sellout??  "Yay, I'm giving money to one of the wealthiest companies in the country!"

    What's next, Happy iPhone Day?

  •  Employer Coverage (0+ / 0-)

    The author quoted a woman who said:

    "With coverage,” she said, “I can be my best self. Health insurance won’t control my job choices.”

    I had always wondered at the business community's recalcitrance to embrace healthcare reform. You would think that not having to worry about employees health coverage would be a no-brainer for a business owner.

    It would also enable responsible business owners to be competitive with competitors who didn't offer health plans. And think how much easier labor contracts would be with health care not even on the table......

    But I realized employer health care is just one more way to keep the working class in subjection. I might over analyze things, but maybe employer health care is just another area the bosses can subjugate employees.

    For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

    by Grey Fedora on Fri Jan 03, 2014 at 10:54:46 PM PST

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