And finally the US hot potato: What is Obamacare

Posted: October 23, 2013 in Uncategorized
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“Obamacare” stands for Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act.

It has been introduced in 2009 and signed in March 2010. It has started to go partially live 1st October 2013 and it will be in full swing by 1 January 2014

What will it do?

The main aim is to expand coverage and make it better quality and more affordable. It will be done through a complex mix of spending cuts, tax hikes, subsidies and mandates for individuals. Some of the key elements of the policy include:

• Insurance companies will be banned from refusing to insure those with pre-existing conditions.

• It will be compulsory to get health insurance. Those who don’t will have to pay a penalty (1% unless exempt on religious or financial grounds.

• Policies will become more comprehensive, meaning people won’t lose their insurance if they fall ill or become pregnant for example. They will also cover more things like prescription drugs and routine check ups.

• People will be able to compare policies and buy insurance online through insurance exchanges.

• Eligibility for Medicaid will be expanded to make insurance more affordable for those on low incomes.

• Children will be able to stay on their parent’s plan until they are 26.

• Businesses with more than 50 full-time employees will have to offer coverage, although this won’t come into effect until 2015.

The issue that the Republican are raising that it will increase the debt.

Obama administration estimated USD 938 Billion over 10 years in 2009, the Senate Budget Commitee in 2012 estimated USD 1.76 trillion over 10 years (also because the “main” Obamacare factor enters 1 Jan 2014).   

 

They also raise the fact that by being obligatory it infringes  the civil liberty and has the potential of decreasing the level of service.

Also Obamacare increases quite a lot of taxes (USD567 billions) and imposes a lot of budget savings (USD477 Billions) -that is why Democrats say that Obamacare actually will improve the Budget. (source Senate Budget Committee and June 2012 National Review)

The biggest issue is that Obamacare has a three pronged attack: compulsory insurance, ban on insurance companies  excluding people and increase in MedicAid (sort of a benefit for less wealthy).

The MedicAid increase has been successfully challenged by 22(!!) states…so in those 22 States low income earner could miss out. But what is worse is that Obamacare counts on everybody been insured in order to function properly.

There are 4 levels of Obamacare (bronze to Platinum) and the cost depend by age, residence and income

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