Obamacare 101 -- A Tough Pill To Swallow
Do we all need health care? You bet we do! But even before the big March 21, 2010 Pelosi / Obama/ Stupak takeover, the citizens of the US already had health care. Do you remeber those days.
Obama was not even in the equation. When we were sick, we went to the doctors. How is not being able to go to your doctor a better deal?
Hard to believe now but it is fact that our illegal alien friends also have health care. It is better care than we will get when we choose not to pay the Obamacare penalty. IllegalCare has been the Federal law since 1986. Can you think of the expense that would be saved if the freeloaders and deadbeats from other countries were not chewing so much out of our system. Maybe we could actually afford more than just emergency room care for all citizens.
By the way, I am for care for the helpless but that is where it ends. I am not for Government being the only health broker in the country because that is where individual freedom ends, and real healthcare is right behind it.
In mid March 2010 before the March 21 bill passed the house, I had been reading about the supposed myths of Obamacare. In a New York Times article by Paul Krugman, he cited what he thought were the three myths of Obamacare. From reading Paul Krugman one could get the idea that he does not read newspapers because he is too busy writing his opinion. He happens to like anything the President and Pelosi and Reid have to say. That is no myth for sure. His writings are pure Obama propaganda.
Do you want to know a real myth? You won't get this from the New York Times. It is a myth. It is a myth that 30,000,000 people do not have healthcare. Do you know any of the 30,000,000? None of my family, and we are a heartland PA family without many white collar workers. Do any of us know any who cannot use EMTALA or choose not to use the free ER care? Seems like ERs are full so why do we need Obamacare. Will it make them fuller? Let's stop now and take a quick look at EMTALA so that we know that Obamacare was not needed unless the idea is to give cadillac plans to the poor, the indigent, and/or the illegals.
The Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act (EMTALA) was part of the very large Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) of 1985 and was in response to a perceived crisis in patient "dumping" by hospitals denying emergency medical care to patients with inadequate or no insurance. Although only 4 pages in length and barely noticed at the time, EMTALA has created a storm of controversy over the ensuing 15 years, and it is now considered one of the most comprehensive laws guaranteeing nondiscriminatory access to emergency medical care and thus to the health care system. And, folks, this was here long before Obamacare. So, why the 2010 emergency? Why did Bart Stupak have to sell his soul to help Nancy Pelosi pass this in the cover of darkness?
I do have relatives who have no health insurance policies but they and everybody else has healthcare because of EMTALA. They know they have healthcare. They had it before Obamacare passed. It has been the law of the land since 1985. Everybody gets healthcare either through their own money, their own insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, or EMTALA. Obamacare was and is a lie, the intention of which is to give government control of your healthcare. It was not and is not an idea to help make care better or more affordable. In fact, it does just the opposite.
Again, I do not advocate EMTALA if you can afford healthcare or if it is provided for you, but it certainly proves that there was and still is healthcare for all without Obamcare bankrupting the US and denying care to the middle class. Obamacare. The court of last resort is EMTALA and it is the law of the land. Nobody is left out. Nobody! And, yes, the term active labor means that if you are in labor, you get to have your baby in the hospital. And, all of this has been in effect without an ounce of Obamacare. Why was nobody telling this to the people? Because the objective of Obamacare was not healthcare but for government to control the 20% of the economy which makes up the ehalthcare industry. When government controls healthcare, it owns you.
I do not mean to suggest that the ER doctors all appreciate the freeloaders who come in for running noses or drug addiction. Often, their interests are as simple as getting a sandwich and a drink and they require no treatment. I don't know why. There are food kitchens that can help them better. Hospital administrators, whose hospitals have figured out how to cope with the law of the land from 1986 have adapted or they would be out of business. I know it is hard to believe that something productive may have actually been accomplished in the pre-Obama days. But, it is true. Obamacare has actually reduced the funding for EMTALA, the greatest benefit the US could give to its citizens and to any interlopers. Now that Obama has taken over healthcare, who feels comfortable getting sick in the US. Probably note our illegal interlopers who once got everything.
In larger hospitals, there are often two ERs. One is for triage etc. and the other is used as a clinic and a place to rest for the indigent who know the address of the ER by heart. This keeps costs down substantially. It is actually geared for the type of person that comes in for help. I mean they are really not emergencies.
They sometimes come in for healthcare, not just a drink, and they get it. If the hospital so much as discusses payment with them, before they receive treatment, they can report the hospital to HEW, and the Hospital can be sued. It is against the law to harass a patient for money in the ER before the person is treated. When they receive the treatment, they may be admitted. If it is a pregnancy and the mother is in labor, they get a room and they have a delivery like anybody else in the OR. (Active Labor Act). In addition to treatment, they are given a drink and something to eat. If they have a baby, they get the same amenities though perhaps the room is not as private. Perhaps.
For the patient it is not such a bad deal. For the hospital, when the patient is finished, they typically just leave and the hospital does not get to collect anything for their service. So it is not such a good idea for the hospitals. Some patients are pure charity and some are funded one way or another by taxpayers. Hospitals have figured out how to give those in need of healthcare the care they need without it costing a $trillion dollars. So, if everybody is already covered, why do we need to cover 30,000,000 more plus the 60,000,000 illegal aliens who get their free healthcare via EMTALA. For me, it does not compute! There is only one answer to that question. The goal of Obamacare is not about healthcare. It is about government control of your life.
At one time, hospitals were so concerned about Medicare audits that they would not ask if the person could pay before delivering service Now, they do ask if one can pay. If the patient states that they cannot pay they must agree to a medical screening exam by a physician to determine if what they have is really an emergency. Most hospitals are still concerned about government retribution and so they just see everyone due to liability. Pregnant women must be seen and stabilized. Many note that this is one of the big reasons why it is assured that illegals are born future Democrats.
Part of Obamacare is to make all people equal in terms of healthcare. In other words, it is not good enough for somebody to be able to be made well by the system -- via charity or by merely slipping out before the hospital gets the billing information. The goal of Obamacare is that everybody, regardless of their status in life or country of origin should have your insurance policy. That is how I see it. You have a good insurance policy. Obama wants that policy in his stash so he can give it away to somebody else. No, he does not care if you worked for it. Pelosi and Matt Cartwright and Bob Casey Jr. from PA have been convinced by Obama that he is right on this. Hey, don't you have a heart? If you do, you should be glad to give your healthcare to somebody else.
The EMTALA is a very charitable act. It is the catch-all. It is America at its best. A little improvement to EMTALA and no Obamacare is necessary. Let me ask again. If everybody at a minimum has some healthcare, what is the issue? Sometimes I really do think the issue for the hard left is that those who get care in ER clinics don't have your (the reader's) insurance policy. They may not have your employer-provided policy because maybe they do not work; but they all do have healthcare, legal and illegal among them. It really bugs the health redistribution crowd of lefties that you have your own insurance policy and they cannot get you to give it willingly to one of the "disadvantaged" in need of a handout. If you give up your insurance policy to somebody else, nobody from the Obamacare institute will ever bug you again. But, what if YOU get sick? You won;t be able to reach them!
When I think about EMTALA, I think it is pretty generous of the medical community to provide it.
Speaking of generosity, after Obamacare passed in March 2010 a proponent of the bill noted that there more than likely would not be an overfilling of doctor's offices with new patients because as he said, "Doctors typically see between eight and ten charity patients a week." My hat is off to the doctors in the US medical community who have been so kind to us all for so long. I think the government should treat them far better. What a shame that doctors will have to depend on the Federal Government soon as their major employer, making rules that are not favorable to doctors or patients.
By the way, with EMTALA, charitable clinics, and charity care by doctors has become the practice of the land. So, where was the emergency requiring? There was none and there is none. Obamacare is a fraud perpetrated on the American people with health insurance policies to get them to give them up by force. If doctors see so many charitable patients a week, can it be that the goal is to have the people via the government pay -- rather than permit the doctor to provide charity? It doesn't make sense! Well, maybe now it does because Obama did not like this argument so he has in fact requested less funding for EMTALA. Maybe he sees it a a competitor to Obamacare? What do you think?
The Affordable Healthcare Act (ACA) which is also known as Obamacare and the EMTALA are in practice, incompatible statutes. Enacted in 1986, EMTALA mandates that hospitals treat anyone in need of emergency health care, regardless of his citizenship status or ability to pay for treatment. Obamacare competes with EMTALA and therefore the government analysts figured they would shortchange the competitive program to avoid the competition. They cut funding by 75%.
Hospitals depend on these funds to offset the costs of of providing the care required by EMTALA law. Obama did not get rid of EMTALA. He got rid of most of the funding. Why? Because EMTALA was more affordable; was just four pages; and all the sweet deals for Obama cronies would be cut off if all that changed was another four pages added to EMTALA. Obama does not see it that way. His minions' project this Obama theory: Because Obamacare requires everybody to have insurance, hospitals will treat fewer uninsured patients who require emergency care that they cannot afford, incur lower uncompensated care costs, and therefore, require less government funding. However, like most government theories this theory is dangerously flawed. It actually may wind up denying care to 3/4 of those who once received it.
Al Aviles, President and CEO of the largest municipal system in the US explains this phenomenon: "That calculus doesn't work in places lick New York," where undocumented immigrants make up a large percentage of uninsured patients and are excluded from the coverage expansion. Under Obamacare, deferral funding to hospitals will decrease while the number of uninsured undocumented immigrants will remain roughly the same or increase at he rate of entry. Illegal foreign nationals contribute to a significant portion of hospitals non-reimbursed costs; thus, the reductions by Obama to EMTALA will impose serious financial burdens on states and hospitals.
Think about this. There was an affordable program that worked and now it is unaffordable and Obamacare itself is unaffordable. Why did government have to touch our healthcare? Once might conclude that our legislators were unaware of EMTALA and Obama did not like it because it did not give government the control of the people that it sought.
When we ask the rhetorical question: "So, if there was no real emergency, why the big push?" The truthful answer and the only logical answer is that It has nothing to do with health care. It is about government control. In a redistributive type of state, what you as an individual possess, such as an adequate health insurance policy, it must be confiscated and be given to someone else. Why should you have something that another person who is not leading your life does not have? That ladies and gentlemen is the essence of Obamacare -- redistribution of healthcare. Soon, you will see it playing at a medical facility near you., if you have not lost all of your healthcare options by then.
What is Universal HealthCare
The United States has no reason to play by Lewis and Clark rules regarding Obamacare. There is no need to send out scouts and settlers into unexplored lands to find out how Obamacare would work out. Obamacare is already practiced throughout the world. Until March 21, 2010, it was forbidden in the US because the US had higher standards.
That's why those who can afford real healthcare come to the US for the best care anywhere in the world. Don't let anybody tell you differently. If you don't believe me, try another country. But, then again, you only have one life so you better guess right. That is why 76% of the population is against Obamacare. Each of us have only one life and we like it the way it is, --- living.
Obamacare everywhere else is called Universal Healthcare. As good as it sounds, it never quite works out the way people hope. It is much less in reality than it is in theory. The Europeans and the Canadians and the Russians had great notions of equality before implementing their programs. Like many things that are kept equal, when everything is equal, there is no room for excellence. Based on the success in these other countries, nobody should want Obamacare. The government loves it because they are in control but the people hate it because if they do not have a ton of money and they get sick, it is OK to die. Government lends an unsympathetic ear. In the US, when we are hurting health-wise, we expect to see doctors, not government bureaucrats whose mission is to save the state money.
Look at Europe before you as a potential healthcare patient vote for EURO-style healthcare for Americans. Don't worry, Congress has already voted your opinion out of the matter. You do not count in determining what is right for your body. No, this is not an abortion speech. Just as the government is willing to throw away these things called "fetuses" that are the youngest of human lives, they are just as happy to throw away "oldasses" (that's the over 62 crowd) before you start costing them big time.
The truthful reports on the issue indicate for sure that citizens in countries with nationalized healthcare never would have accepted this system had they known up-front about the rationing of care, the long lines, and often the lack of excellence. Oh, and did I say, the unnecessary deaths.
Why is it that our leaders do not see the obvious? Or perhaps they do. Socialism may be theoretically fair but it is not known for having heart with empathy for the masses. Go up to any government counter anywhere for any purpose and look at the face you see. Now, envision a big NO, comping from that same person when you ask about a medical procedure that you need in order to live. Get used to it. That's how government works. Our leaders know; they just do not care if it does not affect them. You do know Obamacare does not affect Congress or their staff. Why has our government done its best to try to coax all of us into giving up the best insurance and care we will ever have? Can it be so they can have a legacy and because some deadbeat someplace, who will never complain about government, can have equal care to those, such as you and I who have worked all their lives. Damn their legacy! And, let the deadbeat get a job.
The government wants control and that control means they want to give your healthcare that you worked all you life to maintain and preserve -- they want the power to give that care, your care, to somebody else who you do not even know. They are not as concerned about what care you get in return for giving yours to the healthcare pool. Are you? By the way, it is OK to not feel guilty about not wanting to give up your healthcare so somebody else can take it. Please keep your house also.
As bureaucrats take over medicine, you know intrinsically that costs will go up and quality will go down because doctors spend more and more of their time on government paperwork and less time helping patients. When the post office succumbs to UPS and FEDEX, will Congress come up with a means to keep the lines at the hospitals shorter. Perhaps there can be an ER stamp with a notable person on the stamp. This would permit the bearer of the stamp to have ER care. Maybe there can be a doctor stamp and a nurse stamp and a drug stamp and when you are out of stamps, you are out of Obamacare.
As stamp costs skyrocket, the government could hire other inefficient bureaucrats to take the reins. If necessary, and only if necessary, government may choose to confiscate cash or print more money or maybe just print stamps to somehow pay the Obamacare bills. Can you even trust that government will pay the bills? Perhaps Congress will choose as in social security to shift any resources that they gain for Obamacare and use that money for some nice pork projects to help get themselves reelected? Hey they do run the country!
The weekend in which Obamacare passed, Obama himself proclaimed that this would reduce the deficit, solve long term issues, give everybody a car, and put a chicken in every pot, or so it seemed. If you had a problem, this bill passing was the solution. Some said it was like Christmas in March it was so good. Oh, Obama and his minions in the media were all lying and they still are.
On Monday morning, however, when the exhilaration had ended over the huge progressive "victory," and Obama was not on the airways thirty times a day for at least a few days, other people got to say something about how truthful the President and Ms. Pelosi were with the American people.
Caterpillar, once cited incorrectly by the Obama machine as having created or saved a gazillion jobs more than the US population, rained on the PP parade (President and Pelosi) Caterpillar Inc. in the last week of March 2010 announced that the Obamacare that had just been passed by the U.S. House of Representatives would increase the company's health-care costs by more than $100 million in the first year alone. Yes, Virginia, there is a US government filled with liars. Later in the week, Caterpillar teamed up with John Deere to say that together it would cast them $250 million. Nobody from the Obama team showed up to take pictures. It was almost as if they were from Israel.
The huge cost of healthcare is a major issue keeping all from having the best. If there were no cost and the care were unlimited, why would we not all opt for the best. The irony is that affordable and high quality health care for all with thousands of new features is possible only if government can be stopped from interfering with the marketplace. Even on a good day however, somebody's healthcare package is going to be better than yours or mine. And, I think that is OK. In a world of all beautiful blondes, a brunette would stand out.
But those on the far left want equality. They want all grey haired pimply faces. They are so tuned into equality that they almost lost union support when they decided to one-size-fits-all the unions on health insurance by whacking their policies with a huge luxury tax. Yes, they will bite the hand that feeds them. Unions in 2016 are not too angry because Obama has delayed the cadillac Obamacare tax until after he is out of office. But, it is still on the books. They are obsessively and compulsively trying to work some equality magic on insurance policies but they backed off the unions' or they would not have gotten the bill passed. Their goals of equal, lowest common denominator health care remain. When that comes, our healthcare will be just good enough to give patients free admission to a pay toilet.
Who wants one of those policies? That may sound cute but the fact is the policies are so bad that the people who wrote Obamacare determined their government employee classifications and those who helped them, are excluded. They do not have to worry nor do the rest of their cronies from participation in Obamacare. They are too important for Obamacare. No, I am not kidding. The Republicans via amendments tried to get them back in but the Democratic controlled Senate at the time defended them as did the president and so, they now operate on the only different healthcare plan in the federal government. If Obamacare is so good, why doesn't Obama and his family as well as the people that wrote the bill want it to replace their policies?
If the government is so concerned about the cost of healthcare, don't you wonder why Congress is not energetically advocating tort reform (malpractice suit reform?). You and I know that the cost of health care is directly affected by all the frivolous lawsuits that lawyers just love to file. It is also affected by the monstrous awards received. Granted some incidents are tragic but there are others in which the patient somehow thinks they have drawn the winning lottery ticket and nothing but a big payoff will suit their needs.
Additionally, you see lawyers advertising for clients looking to create issues, often when there are none. Why then in this healthcare battle, where health costs and quality of care are supposedly the prime motivators, why is there no tort reform in the bill? Tort reform can save unneeded tests and tremendous litigation costs adding up to billions and billions of dollars? Let me give you the answer without suspense. This bill is not about healthcare or its high costs. It is about government control.
Doctors are cutting out of their practices at an early age often because of the cost of malpractice insurance. This puts pressure on the whole system as good doctors choose not to practice. Obamacare will not make it any better. Independent doctors have no real reason to work for the government health insurance company. You know that many doctors do not take Medicaid today. Some won't even take Medicare. Who are we kidding thinking that things will get better, not worse for doctors. They will either go out of business or go back to CASH only now that this insane health care plan has passed. Watch as the whole bill eventually sneaks out after Obama is gone.
Tort reform can help keep doctors in the business of healthcare as it lowers their cost to provide care. But, that is not the goal. Government control is the goal and the trial lawyers support the Progressive agenda so limiting their opportunity to realize their greed is off the table. Ask John Edwards.
Without even touching on the notion of malpractice insurance costs, “defensive medicine,” admittedly is practiced by doctors regularly so they do not get sued. This has a huge cost, estimated to consume 4 percent to 9 percent of the nation’s total health care spending.
The Big Numbers that Defeat Obamacare
If you are scoring at home folks, that translates to between roughly $92 billion and $207 billion annually that is wasted on unnecessary tests and procedures that doctors perform simply to avoid the threat of a lawsuit. Eliminating just half of this waste would be enough to cover all uninsured Americans with about an $8,000 per year insurance policy. I am not kidding!
So, do you ever ask yourself why is the healthcare bill priced at $1 trillion. Who's getting that money -- or is it just to pay for the bloated healthcare bureaucracy? Oh, maybe it is not about healthcare at all. Maybe it is about government control!.
Malpractice insurance costs for physicians run anywhere from $15,000 per year to $100,000 with the average being about $40,000. Physicians are only one part of the malpractice formula as all healthcare providers / practitioners need liability insurance. There are between 500,000 and 600,000 physicians of all types in the U.S. today and so the amount taken from the healthcare industry for malpractice insurance in the US is huge. In other words, the cost of just the physician insurance is between $20 billion and $25 billion per year.
Considering that physician cost is only one component, let's assume all other costs are equal to the physician cost of malpractice insurance. The total becomes $40 billion to $50 billion. I am not proposing that such insurance be eliminated but it can sure be reduced with Tort Reform. If half of the savings were secured, that would pay for about 40% of the uninsured. Together both components of healthcare add up to more than 140% of the cost to insure all of the uninsured citizens. YOU can see how important tort reform is in the total healthcare cost equation. Yet, the Congress chose not to include it in its plans. Why is that? Can it be campaign contributions from trial lawyers? If Congress is not reelected, they cannot be in control. You know what you must do with Congress, including Matt Cartwright and Robert Casey Jr. They no longer serve us so let's send them home in a bum's rush.
Obamacare is designed to ruin the medical system.
Can one say that the more money and power that government has, the more power it will abuse? Will anybody out of the chute, just agree to that or does that have to be proven? There are very frightening aspects to all this. Is it possible that by cutting costs, which government will inevitably do when tied against the wall, that this will create a situation in which the denying of vital health services becomes part of the government cost plan? Sorry sir, your food costs and medical costs were too high this year, you will be terminated on April 8, 2018. The government thanks you for helping us meet our budget.
If it is OK to deny care, would that not save money. Will you be able to obtain private insurance? Will you just be asked to die, even if your wallet is full? Will the insurance companies be here ten years from now or will you have to get both stamps and doctor's appointments at the post office. Well, at least stamps. And, yes, those death panels are in the bill.
Here is the scoop. The government will be paying all the bills. This will force doctors and hospitals to dance more and more to the government’s tune. Can you imagine the number of government ringmasters and impresarios who will be needed to fully claim our freedoms. They will be everywhere.
Insurance companies will go out of business. Obamacare says that you pay about $695 in 2016 as penalty for not doing the mandated care "thing." Now that we hit 2016, the Individual Shared Responsibility fee for not having insurance is $695 per adult and $347.50 per child (up to $2,085 for a family), or it’s 2.5% of your household income above the tax return filing threshold for your filing status – whichever is greater. You pay 1/12 of the total fee for each full month in which a family member went without coverage or an exemption. The fee increases each year until it ends up being about the price of getting the cheapest health plan. Everywhere you go, since it is now 2016, you hear people grumbling about this. Everything... I mean everything ... about Obamacare will get worse. It is timed to all kick in when he is out of office and the elections of 2016 are over.
So, you do not need a policy if you pay the fine / tax. God forbid, but for example, let's say you get real sick. The bill says you can go get a policy even with your poor prognosis / pre-existing conditions. Can you tell me why anybody should carry insurance at all? Just get an Obamacare policy when you get sick. Then, when you are better drop coverage and pay the fine again. Think of the losses insurance companies will go through.
Well, surprise surprise, this is not totally true. If you get sick in 2016 after the open enrollment period ends, you must not be so sick that you die before the fall when the next open enrollment period for 2017 begins. You will have to wait eleven months for insurance if you chose to pay the penalty for 2016. That is how the government is minimizing its losses on pre-existing conditions. They hope you are gone in 11 months so you will never get insurance.
This is a great plan devised by Moe Larry, and Curly, Shemp, and Curly Joe. Within a few years after people catch on, insurance companies will no longer be an option. They will be gone. They make their money when nobody gets sick. If all their customers are terminally sick when they go to them, there will be only one provider left that can fill the bill. Gummy Gumment will step to the plate like the mustachioed messiah saving the damsel on the tracks: "I'll pay the costs." Only the government will be left. I wonder if that has been the plan all along? Government control and healthcare redistribution will then be able to run unimpeded. Of course once your healthcare plan is redistributed, more than likely you won't see it again.
The great irony is that in turning the good of healthcare into a right, your life and liberty are put in jeopardy. That which you worked for is gone but somebody who never worked is now in a position to outlive you.