If one listens to Democrat Party officials or their media sycophants one comes away with two impressions. First, Obamacare should be renamed, “The Preexisting Illness Coverage Bill.” Second, the American Health Care Act should be renamed, “Death To Those With Preexisting Illnesses Act.” Ya’ gotta love these guys. They know how to grab public attention.
So are they correct? In a remarkably informative article, Guy Benson enlightens us about the truthfulness of these Democrat talking points.
[Source: Fact Check: It’s a Lie That the GOP Healthcare Bill Abandons People With Pre-Existing Conditions, by Guy Benson]
Former President Obama chimed in yesterday. “It takes little courage to aid those who are already powerful, already comfortable, already influential,” Mr. Obama said, “but it takes great courage to champion the vulnerable and the sick and the infirm.” When it comes to condescension Mr. Obama has no peers. This statement basically says “if you you voted with me you walk with the angels. If you didn’t vote with me you are a scumbag.” Well, Mr Obama, I spent nearly 50 years actually attending to the needs of “the vulnerable and the sick and the infirm” and I DIDN’T VOTE WITH YOU! You’re healthcare bill SUCKS!
Point one: There are 321.4 million Americans. At peak enrollment how many of them were insured by Obamacare’s Pre-existing Condition Insurance Plan? The answer is 115,000 or 0.0004 of the populace. I certainly am NOT saying that these people are unimportant. What I am saying is that they are a small group that can be appropriately helped without the federal government taking over healthcare and 1/6 of the US GDP.
Wait, wait, say you! The Democrats (like Kamala Harris) are saying there 129 million Americans with preexisting conditions! I cannot vouch for the accuracy of that number but can state unequivocally that prior to Obamacare, the vast majority of Americans with health insurance were already in plans that were required to offer them coverage regardless of pre-existing conditions. Employer-based plans were required to offer coverage to everyone regardless of pre-existing conditions. So were Medicare, Medicaid, and other government programs like the VA. Employer- and government-based plans, prior to Obamacare, represented 90 percent of Americans with health insurance. The truth is that not even 129,000 signed up for the Obamacare, let alone 129,000,000.
Point two: Does the AHCA “leave these poor souls out in the cold?” Definitely NOT! [From the Benson article]
- Layer One: Insurers are required to sell plans to all comers, including those with pre-existing conditions. This is known as “guaranteed issue,” and it’s mandated in the AHCA. No exceptions, no waivers. I spoke with an informed conservative news consumer earlier who was stunned to learn that this was the case, having been subjected to 24 hours of unhinged rhetoric from the Left.
- Layer Two: Anyone with a pre-existing condition and who lives in a state that does not seek an optional waiver from the AHCA’s (and Obamacare’s) “community rating” regulation cannot be charged more than other people for a new plan when they seek to purchase one — which, as established above, insurers are also required to sell them.
- Layer Three: Anyone who is insured and remains continuously insured cannot be dropped from their plan due to a pre-existing condition, and cannot be charged more after developing one. So if you’ve been covered, then you change jobs or want to switch plans, carriers must sell you the plan of your choice at the same price point as everyone else. Regardless of your health status. This is true of people in non-waiver and waiver states alike.
- Layer Four: If you are uninsured and have a pre-existing condition and live in a state that pursued (and obtained after jumping through hoops) a “community rating” waiver, your state is required to give you access to a “high risk pool” fund to help you pay for higher premiums. The AHCA earmarks nearly $130 billion for these sorts of patient stability funds over ten years.
Now one can have a reasonable argument as to whether or not $130 billion is sufficient, but one cannot argue that the AHCA dumps those with preexisting conditions.