I was up late last night watching Healthcare pass! So exciting*! In this political climate (read: people grandstanding instead of working towards compromise) getting it done in 14 months is really admirable. Here are some of the immediate changes:
- Prohibit pre-existing condition exclusions for children in all new plans;
- Provide immediate access to insurance for uninsured Americans who are uninsured because of a pre-existing condition through a temporary high-risk pool;
- Prohibit dropping people from coverage when they get sick in all individual plans;
- Lower seniors’ prescription drug prices by beginning to close the donut hole;
- Offer tax credits to small businesses to purchase coverage;
- Eliminate lifetime limits and restrictive annual limits on benefits in all plans;
- Require plans to cover an enrollee’s dependent children until age 26;
- Require new plans to cover preventive services and immunizations without cost-sharing;
- Ensure consumers have access to an effective internal and external appeals process to appeal new insurance plan decisions;
- Require premium rebates to enrollees from insurers with high administrative expenditures and require public disclosure of the percent of premiums applied to overhead costs (Source: Huffington Post).
I read some of those and still seem incredulous that some of these things have been allowed in a “developed” country**.
*I’m a liberal progressive so I am disappointed that there isn’t a public option (and I would rather single-payer) but I’m choosing to see incremental change as a positive development instead of dwelling on what we didn’t get.
**I don’t want abortion rates to increase (and I don’t think they will since free abortion was already available to many) but I think ignoring the plight of millions of people like my sister, who can’t get the one medication for her illness despite being “insured,” in name of a single issue is ignorant. Worse yet, it is a smoke screen for the real reasons republicans don’t want HCR: $$ and big business. Don’t think insurance isn’t big business. For those of us that want to save unborn babies – get off your butts and advocate for women and babies and families rather than further limiting choices. I don’t recall Jesus marching on Rome. I do recall him teaching about love and hope: Matthew 5.
*** I need a footnote program like Arwyn.
I’m now on Facebook! Will you join me?
Did you like this post? Rate it below or Subscribe to my RSS Feed via Reader, Twitter, or Email