I notice that there are two, recurring criticisms that get posted online about the Affordable Care Act. Each a bit contradictory of the other. One is that "the ACA plan is more expensive than what I now have." The other is that "I don't benefit from the ACA plan."
The thing is, most of these laments are meaningless because a) they offer no detail, and b) they tend to be information gotten when checking if they qualify, not by looking at the actual plans.
For those who say the ACA plan is more expensive, they're ignoring several things. First, if their own plan is cheaper, that's because they have a plan through work, are being subsidized by their company. That's why it appears to be less. Second, the monthly cost of an ACA plan doesn't tell the full story of the savings. For instance, the monthly cost may be more, but there is likely a significantly lower deductible. (So, you might save thousands right there.) And the costs of procedures covered by the ACA plan might likely be much less than they coverage they now have. Moreover, the co-pay of the ACA plan may well be much less. Plus, there are many ACA plans to choose from -- with lower monthly costs, but higher deductibles (and vice-versa). So, there are a great deal of savings that people aren't "reporting."
And as for saying that they don't benefit from the ACA -- that's just not true. Even if you don't quality for a government-subsidized plan, you still benefit. The Affordable Care Act is MUCH more than just those plans. You benefit because a great deal of preventative procedures are now fully covered. Colon cancer screening exams, mammary screening exams, a lot of prescriptions, doctors exams and a great deal more -- all fully covered, 100%, whatever medical coverage you have. And you now can't be turned down for instance if you have a pre-existing condition. And there's no longer a lifetime cap on how much will be covered. (That could save you hundreds of thousands of dollars, let along for some people literally millions.) And your children up to the age of 26 can now be covered on your policy. All that whatever your policy is, whether it's a subsidized plan or the one you have now and are keeping. So...you DO save, it DOES benefit you. Even if you do nothing.
And as for not qualifying for a government-subsized plan...the ACA is not intended to subsidize everyone. That part of the plan is meant for people who don't have health insurance through work or who can't afford it. Everyone else, if you have health insurance and like it...you keep it.
(If your insurance rates go up -- blame the insurance company. They're the ones who raised your raised. Other companies haven't.)
The thing is, for all those people who are complaining that they don't qualify for a government-subsized plan -- hey the next time this comes up, you might want to consider supporting Single Payer. Y'know, that thing you were against before and are complaining you don't have now...
As for the computer glitches --
Yes, they're lousy. Most state exchanges don't have the same glitches and are running much better, but that's no excuse. The glitches on healthcare.gov are bad. Forgetting for a moment, however, that almost all big rollouts have had computer tech glitches, and Republicans loudly defended the big glitches of the Bush Medical D rollout, my favorite comment on all this was a simple statement that read --
"I'd rather support a party that has a big computer glitch than one which didn't offer low-cost healthcare at all."
And in the end, it's a computer glitch. The actual program itself? It's very good -- see above.
Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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