People The Health Plan Will Hurt

Jerry Coffee
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Wednesday - March 31, 2010
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“People willing to trade their freedom for temporary security deserve neither and will lose both.” -Benjamin Franklin

Our Founding Father’s sage observation could not have been better epitomized than in the national health care legislation - “Obamacare” - recently passed by the Democratic majorities in the House and Senate and signed by the president. And this despite the most recent polls showing support for the legislation among all Americans had fallen to around 35 percent, which the “yea” voters all simply ignored.

In a recent online version of Investors Review Daily,, IRD‘s David Hogberg writes, “Of course, the overhaul is supposed to provide us with security. But it will result in skyrocketing insurance costs, and physicians leaving the field in droves, making it harder to afford and even find medical care.”

He goes on to list several ways the legislation constitutes not just a power grab by Congress and the president, but perhaps the most sobering “freedom grab” in our nation’s history:

* Let’s say you are young and healthy and for whatever reason decide you don’t want health insurance (or you simply want to spend your money for something else) - tough! It will cost you $750 a year. And since it will be collected by the IRS, we can call it a “freedom to opt out tax.” (Section 1501)

* Let’s say you are still young and healthy and don’t mind paying for insurance that reflects your good health - tough! You will still have to pay premiums that would cover a heavy smoker, an alcoholic or a diabetic couch potato because insurance companies can no longer underwrite based upon a person’s health status (the other side of the “no refusal for preexisting conditions” coin). (Section 2701)

* Let’s say you want to pay less in premiums for coverage with annual or lifetime limits - tough! Insurers can no longer offer such policies even if preferred by customers. (Section 2711)

* Let’s say you are young and have a healthy lifestyle and want a cheaper insurance policy that doesn’t cover preventative care - tough! Insurers can no longer offer a policy that does not cover preventative care. (Section 2712)

* Let’s say you are an employer and don’t mind paying your employees’ health coverage (your moral responsibility for even this is debatable) but not their deadbeat kids up to age 26 - tough! You pay. (Section 2714)

* Let’s say you are an average young man or woman, robust and healthy. You must still pay the premiums for a policy that covers ambulatory patient services, emergency services, maternity and newborn care, mental care and substance abuse services, behavioral health and treatment, prescription drugs, rehab services and devices, laboratory services, preventive and wellness services, chronic disease management services, pediatric services including oral and vision.

* Let’s say you are a single guy without kids. You still pay coverage for pediatric services. A woman who can’t have children? You must still pay for maternity service coverage. A teetotaler? You still pay for substance abuse coverage. (Section 1302)

* Let’s say you want a plan with lower premiums but more cost sharing. The best you can do is with the “Bronze Plan,” which provides 60 percent of the actuarial value of the benefits. (Section 1302 [d][1][a])

These are just a few examples of freedom lost, and on top of all this, Obamacare will tax the insurance, pharmaceutical and medical device industries literally tens of billions of dollars in increasing amounts over the next 10 years. We all know that taxes paid by businesses are simply passed on to consumers, hence so much for “cheaper health care” and freedom of choice in spending our own money. Plus, we can kiss off the kind of research and development which has put America at the forefront of pharmaceutical and medical device technology. Talk about killing the golden egg-laying goose!

Maybe all this recent earthquake activity around the globe is just ol’ Ben Franklin turning over in his grave!

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