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Time for Medicare for All? Worries grow that health overhaul could price out many

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Karmadillo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 12:38 PM
Original message
Time for Medicare for All? Worries grow that health overhaul could price out many
Edited on Sun Dec-06-09 12:50 PM by Karmadillo
http://www.boston.com/news/nation/washington/articles/2... /

WASHINGTON - President Obama has promised that the nations health care overhaul will make medical insurance available - and affordable - for everyone. But while bills in Congress would make insurance more accessible for millions of Americans, advocates worry that the Senate bill would impose significant financial burdens on some of the families who will now be required to buy coverage.

Graphic It is a difficult and politically volatile problem for Democrats working toward passage of a sweeping insurance requirement heading into what promises to be a tough election year.

Bowing to consumer groups concerns about affordability, Democratic leaders have already added billions of dollars in subsidies to the proposal being debated on the Senate floor. But advocates remain concerned that even with that government help, premiums under the Senate measure would consume large portions of monthly budgets for families with low incomes.

I think theres still a significant problem for anyone whos at the bottom end of the income scale in the Senate version, said Michael Miller policy director of Community Catalyst, a Boston-based consumer health care advocacy group at the forefront of the affordability discussion.

Ron Pollack, executive director of Families USA, said that if the bill passes the Senate, advocates will try to persuade House and Senate leaders to adopt the contribution levels the House proposed for those with incomes at the lower end of the scale.

For that group almost any out-of-pocket cost can be unaffordable, he said.

Under the Senate proposal, most Americans would be required to buy health insurance. More than half of the people who could not get affordable coverage through their employers would be eligible for federally subsidized insurance, which could be purchased through an exchange - a new insurance market similar to the Massachusetts Health Insurance Connector. Those subsidies would cover nearly two-thirds of their insurance premium, according to congressional budget analysts - a huge savings for millions of families.

But advocates worry that such plans could still be too costly for some. A single mother of two with income of around $28,000 a year, for example, could have to pay more than $100 a month for insurance. In Massachusetts, the only state with a similar subsidized insurance system for people with low incomes, she would pay only $39.

more...
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Karmadillo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 01:06 PM
Response to Original message
1. Wouldn't single-payer avoid this problem?
nt
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Vincardog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 02:19 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. YES SP is the answer. It Covers everyone controls costs and in the lease expensive. Why do you think
they will not sent it to the CBO to be scored?
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jtrockville Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 02:24 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. There's only ONE thing single-payer doesn't address:
protection of profit-taking by the insurance industry. Apparently this is far more important than ensuring everyone has health care.
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noise Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 02:27 PM
Response to Reply #3
5. It is
The whole debate is an elaborate PR scheme intended to distract from the simple conclusion--single payer would be the plan put forth by a Congress acting in good faith.
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Nikki Stone1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 02:27 PM
Response to Original message
4. This public-private health care thing is the Beast with Two Backs, an incestuous coupling of
government and industry that guarantees only more debt and, ultimately, suffering.
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Karmadillo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 04:37 PM
Response to Reply #4
6. Good to see what "our" side can achieve when it gets the chance.
nt
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