Tuesday, March 7, 2017

The Republicans’ Plan to Repeal and Replace Obamacare

Speaker Paul D. Ryan spoke about the House Republicans’ plan
 to replace the Affordable Care Act on Thursday. Credit Al Drago/The New York Times

 Speaker of the House Paul Ryan's full plan to repeal and replace Obamacare leans “heavily on tax credits to finance individual insurance purchases and sharply reducing federal payments to the 31 states that have expanded Medicaid eligibility.” Ryan said that Republicans would introduce the  when lawmakers return from next week's recess.

Ryan and the Republicans always point out that under their plan all Americans will have access to healthcare insurance with quality coverage. That their plan breaks down barriers that restrict choice and prevent Americans from picking the plan best for them and their family.

The problem is with the word “access.” Everyone has access to free market choices, including quality healthcare insurance. What access means it’s available if you can afford it. Then you can pick “the plan that is best for them and their family.” The barrier that restricts choice is affordability. And, affordable healthcare insurance cannot be provided in a for-profit economic environment.

Moreover, there are more than 43 million people in the United States who live in poverty. These folks don’t have a voice, they are generally uninformed, and many don’t have the wherewithal to make the right decisions.  This plan, reportedly, leaves them out in the cold.

Affordable Care Act opponents may be happy they have low cost plans from which to choose. But will soon find out that, although their insurance policies are low cost, their doctor, drug, or hospital bill will cost a lot more than they anticipated.

The New York Times reports, Republican Health Proposal Would Redirect Money From Poor to Rich, which is one more problem with Ryan’s plan.

The best plan is to provide Medicare for all, a universal single payer plan.