Health Care, Where We Stand Now

Last Friday, the Senate held a vote on a “skinny” repeal of the ACA. The vote yielded a 51-nay to 49-aye result in opposition to any repeal of the ACA. Essentially, where we stand now is exactly where we stood before, unsatisfied. Now, Americans must consider whether dissatisfaction is tolerable while universally satisfactory healthcare coverage remains elusive.

Rising premiums, high cost of prescription medication, and disincentive to accept Medicaid patients are just some of the reasons why some Americans are calling for another healthcare overhaul.

In my last post, I touched on the reason why premiums are rising, I’d also like to add that as America ages, less, healthy, young Americans will have to offset more, sick, old Americans in insurance risk pools. To be clear, when I say offset, I mean subsidize. The only way to temporarily keep premiums from rising is to greatly expand the risk pool to cover new, young, healthy, policy holders via competition, incentive, penalty, or mandate. As for a long term solution, the government would need to look at a total overhaul of our current healthcare system, but I’d rather not get into that right now.

In regards to the high and rising costs of prescription medication, Congress is currently working on a solution for it. If many of you are wondering why prescription drugs under Medicaid are so expensive its because hospitals and doctors are disincentivized by current federal billing regulations to prescribe anything other than the most expensive medication available for treatment. Furthermore, Medicare and Medicaid are not able to negotiate prices with drug manufacturers and as a result, beneficiaries pay more than they should for their medication.

These are a few of the issues that we will have to confront moving forward, good luck!