Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The Obama Health Care Plan – At Odds with The AMA, Hospitals and Providers - Politics Trump Justice

Speaking to the AMA in Chicagoyesterday, the President, touting his proposal for Universal Health Care, ran into a snag when he indicated that he would not support limits on jury damages in malpractice suits. In fact, the audience booed – of course, as noted in the AP release, supporting legislation that would limit damages in malpractice suits, would offend the largest donors to the Democrat National Committee: trail lawyers and unions. In his usual manner, the President, used “crisis” to emphasis the need for haste in passing Government run healthcare – he compared it to GM, in fact, and as of yet, there is no indication that the Government run Auto Maker will have any success what-so-ever.

Case in point - The Universal Health Care plan that is being foisted on the American Public at the speed of light (similar to the Stimulus plan that certain members of the administration now admit, was done without a clue), has hospitals and other health care providers concerned; simply put, in order to pay for the entire plan, services must be cut somewhere, and cuts to these benefits, would be just the beginning. The plan currently being drafted by the Democrats includes $600 million in new taxes. The model is similar to the Massachusetts plan – in that it allows individuals to choose a government plan, and/or a private insurer – with the Government plan being far less pricey, (subsidized by the state) than the traditional health insurance plan. Several scenarios’ develop, rates under the traditional carriers rise, and taxes on individuals rise, in order to cover the plan subsidies.

Should anyone study the Massachusetts model, the original intent of the Governor Mitt Romney, being to offer insurance through a system that had basic coverage, morphed into a complete coverage program under the Patrick administration – the costs rose significantly as the Commonwealth (Legislature), added mandate upon mandate to the new State Plan, including elective surgery, not fully covered under most private plans Therefore, a trial of universal health care is in place, in the State of Massachusetts, and to date, it is a dismal failure. How does the State pay for the pricey program? Through increases in premiums for those who can “afford” to pay, through fees assessed on those who cannot afford, or will not participate in the plan, and, of course, increases in general taxes.

Perhaps more than one of the Senators now opposing the model of Universal Health Care, have looked at the Massachusetts model, or more to the point, perhaps they understand now, that decisions made in haste, with a president that uses fear as a factor to get legislation passed, are not always in the best interest in the nation. Suffice it to say, that this version may not make it past the planning stages.

1 comment:

Chuck said...

This overhaul will undergo many incarnations before it is (maybe) inacted. What I am hearing now though is that providers and hospitals will be getting smaller payments. Realize that the federal government already does not pay full cost. The end result is that some hospitals will be forced out of business. Want to guess which ones? The ones that provide services for the poor people Obama is supposed to be helping. A lot of these hospitals are already struggling to keep thier doors open, largely because of illegal immigration. We are heading to a mess and no one seems to be getting it. (present company excluded of course)

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