Follow by Email

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Silence is Golden ... and now Broken (Healthcare part 1)

I've been trying not to write this post for over a month now.
It's too serious.
This blog is supposed to be light-hearted, a place to unwind. At the heaviest, to consider parenting dilemmas, such as which Disney princess to allow my daughter to emulate.
But. I can't keep this inside any more.
I don't get opposition to the Affordable Care Act. Every time I hear "Obamacare," I cringe. I guess it's appropriate. I assume that's the part many opponents dislike about the law.

Most people aren't going to argue with the goal of the law - improved access to health services and improved health outcomes for all Americans. At least, they aren't going to argue with it out loud.

And the thing is - each part of it is necessary. They imply each other. The best analogy I've seen is "the three-legged stool."

  1. Require insurance companies to cover everyone.
  2. Mandate everyone to have health insurance.
  3. Subsidize people who truly cannot afford health insurance.

Remove one, and the stool falls down. And, the mandate is the one with a big bull's eye on its back, right?

  • If insurance companies cover everyone, but not everyone has to buy -- healthy people wait till their sick to buy insurance; premiums go up up up.
If you want to opt out of buying insurance, and you were never ever going to use the healthcare system? More power to you. 
But when people get sick? (Even if they intentionally are intentionally uninsured or truly couldn't afford it.) They typically go get healthcare. And when uninsured people get healthcare, hospitals lose money. So -- Hospitals have to charge insurance companies more for services to their patients to make up the difference. 
And then? MY premiums go up.
So I? I believe in the mandate. I believe it in strongly.

Did you get your kids vaccinated with all the vaccines your doctor said was mandatory? Most likely. Because otherwise, your kids can't go to school.
We mandate vaccines because they only work when enough people have them -- herd immunity.

Insurance is similar. It only works if enough people have it.

Now that I've started, I find I have more to say about this. Like - 1. why I would prefer my health insurance not be tied to my employer. And 2. what a great world it would be if there were no health disparities. But those will have to wait for another day.

1 comment:

  1. Obamacare is SUCH a tangled mess of a thing. I have a friend who is from Canada(where they have socialized medicine) and her mother became a doctor and immigrated here.

    They say, "It's coming. You won't like it."