Why Obamacare Must be Allowed to Fail [AUDIO]
I'm finally beginning to understand the furor over the new health insurance act known as "Obamacare," especially from health insurance companies.
The light finally came on for me as I was preparing a news story involving one of our listeners whose company health plan had been "discontinued" to be replaced by another plan offered by the same company, Blue Cross Blue Shield.
I contacted the company and spoke with John Doran, Director of Strategic Marketing and Communication, who explained why one plan had to be replaced by another.
"Beginning on January 1, 2014, all health plans must meet what are called 'essential minimum benefits,'" Doran said.
According to the glossary of terms on the healthcare.gov website, here are those "essential minimum benefits" that must be in every plan, both inside and outside the exchange marketplace. That's every plan. No exceptions.
Ambulatory patient services, emergency services, hospitalization, maternity and newborn care, mental health and substance abuse disorder services, including behavioral health treatment, prescription drugs, rehabilitative and habilitative services, laboratory services, preventive and wellness services and chronic disease management, and pediatric services, including dental and vision care.
"To make sure that all of our 2014 plans comply with new federal legislation, we actually have to discontinue plans that don't currently meet those standards, and then re-enroll members in the plans that do," Doran said.
The plan that this individual and his company is being switched to is called the Blue Edge HSA plan.
"This is what's called a high-deductible health plan, so you have a lower monthly premium with a higher deductible, but then the Health Savings Account allows the employer and the employee to contribute money into that fund that then can be used toward that deductible," Doran said.
Doran wanted to soften the blow by de-emphasizing the word "discontinued."
"We want to make sure that folks don't get too alarmed by the word 'discontinued,' because all those plans are going away," he said. "All of those companies and all of those employees have been mapped to the most similar plan for 2014 that meets those minimum essential benefits."
John Doran, Director of Strategic Marketing and Communications for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Montana
Providing the essential minimum benefits will force the price of each individual policy to skyrocket, necessitating the subsidies to be provided by the federal government, already under a debt of nearly $17 trillion dollars. Some families won't qualify for the subsidies, meaning the cost of their own healthcare plan may dwarf other areas of their budgets.
Match the strict new rules for insurance companies with what is called by the Internal Revenue Service "the Individual Shared Responsibility" provision, also known as the individual mandate, and the healthcare of every man, woman and child in America is now under the control of the United States government.
I understand now why those who have so forcefully spoken out against this pervasive plan say it is an attack upon personal freedom and liberty.
Let's talk about liberty for a moment.
The Declaration of Independence states, "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal,and are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness."
Life, to me, means the right to exist, to live, breathe and grow. However, over 40 million abortions have put that right at risk. Liberty means enjoying the freedom under the law to live that life with personal responsibility and respect for my fellow man. The pursuit of happiness does not mean each man and woman is guaranteed happiness, but is allowed to pursue that happiness under the law. This allows people the right to succeed, and must also include the right to fail, and begin again.
The new healthcare laws hinder the pursuit of happiness, in my opinion, by forcing people into cookie-cutter health plans that will be extraordinarily expensive, both in terms of the actual cost of the care, as well as the massively higher deductibles.
The failure of the healthcare website, the refusal of congress to live under the same rules handed down to everyday Americans, and the delay of the individual mandate to big business, should all work together to wake up the American people to demand a change, either through legislation or election, or both.
Obamacare should have the freedom to fail. It will collapse under its own massive weight, leaving the rest of us to pick up the pieces and begin again.