Obama’s Health Care Reform – Where Are We Going??
Obama’s health care reform is always a topic of hot debate. Over the years, so many changes or perceived changes have occurred. Where do you stand? What changes do you want to see in the next years?
Cost may be at the forefront.
It has been estimated that “Covering 50 million uninsured Americans could cost as much as $1.5 trillion over a decade.” citation from “Obama team plans more active role on health”
Obama’s health care reform is attempting to allow Congress to progress at its own pace – which is slower than his initial anticipation and expectation.
Some beginning legislation is attempting to force employers to cover their employees or face a strict penalty. This would allow for coverage for every working employee. However, it is less known to what extent this would be applied.
Another option is an insurance plan that would be government-sponsored. This would allow the public to choose between their current work-provided health care or a government-sponsored insurance plan. Those against this are private insurers who argue that they would be pushed aside and would soon be forced to shut their doors.
Obama stated in a radio and Internet address: “This issue, health care reform, is not a luxury. It’s not something that I want to do because of campaign promises or politics. This is a necessity. This is something that has to be done.”
Another recent issue that congress is mulling over currently is to ask some 164 million Americans who are currently covered by their employers to “give up at least part of the longstanding tax exemption granted to such compensation.
Some believe that this will primarily affect the wealthy who receive the largest tax break due to the exclusion of their income. A similar idea was passed around during the Regan administration back in 1984.
What does this actually mean? Currently, we are not taxed on our insurance. Or in other words, our yearly income is not higher because our insurance does not play into our income. We therefore receive a “tax break”. This may lead to the coverage provided by employees that leads to higher deductibles or co-pays and/or an overall coverage that is less extensive and complete.
Recently Republicans from the Finance Committee gave a warning to President Obama and they insisted that he was making a mistake by supporting a government sponsored insurance plan directed at the middle class. Their concerns are that the government would begin to control the insurance market and that other private companies would be pushed out. Many Democrats remain mixed with many who support the idea but remain cautious with the finer details.
Reformation ideas are ever changing with the current need for a health care reform.
It will be interesting to watch as political dust is thrown in the air and watch where it lands and who is affected.
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