It seems that with each passing month we get more news about the true impacts of DemCare. Unfortunately, the news is not good. First, John Deere, AT&T, Verizon and other major companies released numbers reflecting the losses they would take. They were called liars and fear mongers for producing these documents, never mind they were legally obligated to provide them. Then came the realization many of the loudly-heralded benefits didn’t kick in until 2014, despite taxes going up this year. Next, there are claims the executive order given to Bart Stupak to buy his support will not hold up and Federal tax dollars may in fact be used to fund abortions. What a surprise, “law” trumped and Executive Order. But now we are finding out many of us “who like our providers,” will in fact NOT be allowed to keep them. Despite an abundance of rhetoric to reassure Americans they could keep their insurance plan if they liked what they have, it’s now coming out it will not necessarily work that way.
There are several reasons this will not hold true, when DemCare meets real life. First, the incentives in the legislation make it certain that many businesses will no longer provide healthcare to employees (many of whom “like” their coverage). Because the cost of insurance will soar, a result of accepting anyone regardless of healthfulness and mandated items to cover, it will make more sense for larger corporations to dump their coverage and pay a $2,000 “fine” (also known as a tax). For instance, a company with 100 employees paying between $7-8,000 for health insurance would be stupid to not drop the coverage in favor of the $2,000 fine. Beyond that, the fine exempts the first 40 employees, essentially the company gets those free. With a savings like that, what company wouldn’t jump on that deal? Then these employees, who liked their coverage, are now lucky enough to get to pick one of the government options. What a deal, right?! Oh but wait, those same employees will now get to pay for their excellent, government-provided insurance with AFTER-TAX dollars, meaning less money in their pockets, for worse care. Just what we all wanted right?
The second way to lose your health plan is for the company to modify the terms in “significant” way. Sure, if you have a plan now it’ll be grandfathered into the new system; however, if the plan is changed by a 5% deductable raise, dropping any coverage, increasing co-pay by $5 or the employers shops for a cheaper plan and switches companies, poof your plan is gone. Now you’re forced into the same previously mentioned government exchanges. Don’t think this will apply to you? Guess again, “The Obama administration itself estimates that these draft rules could cost up to 80% of small employers and 64% of large employers their grandfathered status. This translates to between 87 million and 115 million Americans losing their current coverage.” Is there a chance the small business you work for just might want to cut some costs, save some money and grow the company? Then watch out, your healthcare might be handed to Uncle Sam.
The last and most concerning reason you might be on a new healthcare plan is the fact that many insurance companies will struggle to survive. The legislation forces insurers to accept anyone, with any pre-existing condition, yet limits the differences in premiums they are allowed to charge. This means premiums will sky-rocket for young healthy people, to subsidize older, sicker people. So my generation should be outraged though we don’t seem to care…but I digress. Anyway, as prices sky-rocket due to increased liabilities, there likely are also new mandated coverages that will be included in plans (each state mandates different minimums, why wouldn’t the Federal Government?). These additional costs will make people less interested in insurance and more willing to pay the fine. As this happens companies will have an increasingly difficult time staying afloat, until they inevitably collapse into bankruptcy. This has already started to occur. Even if the insurance companies don’t completely collapse they will become more and more irrelevant, until the only provider left is the U.S. Federal Government.
When are we going to wake up? We got sold a bill of lies. It was a 2,000 page law that no one in Congress read, or even understood. Now we have a bunch of bureaucrats on Capitol Hill writing edicts and interjecting into some of our most private decisions. I thought all those Conservatives were just making things up; we were going to get to keep our plans and our doctors. Let’s just wait and see if the others things we said would happen do…”death panels” anyone? If you don’t see that writing on the wall just check out Dr. Donald Berwick, President Obama’s recess appointment.