We’ve all heard it said hundreds of times that under the Affordable Care Act every American will have affordable healthcare insurance. Barack Obama and Nancy Pelosi still try to convince us of this even though they both know it’s nothing but a lie.
Rachel Garfield, Senior Researcher for the Kaiser Family Foundation and Associate Director for the Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured explained just how the ACA was supposed to help get everyone insured. It’s based upon three basic tiers of income. The poorest Americans would qualify for Medicaid, especially under the ACA expansion of Medicaid coverage. The middle income group would obtain their coverage through their employer or from the Obamacare marketplace. The rich group can basically afford to purchase whatever coverage they want from whomever they want.
That is the way the system was supposed to work. However, there are two main factors that have broken the system and created an abyss for many Americans.
The first factor is that coverage through the Obamacare marketplace on the average costs more for less coverage than many of the health insurance plans it replaced. In some states the ACA increased the costs of coverage by 30% to 50%, making it unaffordable to many.
People with pre-existing conditions were told that they would be guaranteed coverage but they never promised it would be affordable. For many people with pre-existing conditions, the coverage is too expensive. Take my wife and me for example. We both have pre-existing conditions and the cheapest AFA plan we could find, (a bronze plan with a $4,000 deductible and then it will only cover 60% after reaching the deductible) would cost us $816 a month. There is no way we could pay that much a month, even for a plan with no deductible and 100% coverage. It will cost us less to pay the penalty at the end of the year than it would to pay so much for so little coverage and there are many others like us.
The second factor creating an abyss for the uninsured rests with the Supreme Court’s decision on Medicaid. They ruled that as written in Obamacare, Medicaid could not be forced upon the states. Consequently, twenty-one states opted not to accept the ACA expansion and there are two other states that are still debating the issue.
In those states that did not accept the federal expansion of Medicaid, a number of people have been left in the uninsured abyss. They make too much money to qualify for Medicaid but they don’t make enough money to afford the outrageous premiums of exchange purchased policies.
“Because the intention was that there would be this continuum, the way the law was written was so that those at the lowest income levels are not eligible for tax credits to purchase coverage in the marketplace. So, if they’re in a state that doesn’t expand Medicaid, they are left with no financial assistance for coverage under the ACA.”
Basically, the Affordable Care Act has and still is a broken and failed attempt to force Americans into socialized medicine. Instead of having more Americans covered by healthcare insurance today there are less and the gap seems to be widening at every turn. Hopefully the new GOP Congress will be able to do something to fix or replace Obamacare before it bankrupts us and the country.