01 Nov 2014 ObamaCare Politics Can Be Hazardous To Your Health, by Elaina George, MD
ObamaCare proponents are getting exactly what they wanted. As more becomes known about what was actually in the bill, it’s clear the majority of Americans were the losers.
Supporters of the governmental takeover of health care declared victory because there has been a decrease in costs. What they fail to mention is the reason for the decrease was that people can’t afford to use their insurance because of the high out-of-pocket costs of their ObamaCare policies.
It is imperative to remember that many — if not all — of the lawmakers who voted for this disaster didn’t read it. Remember how they demonized colleagues who raised valid questions about access to care, costs and rationing? And don’t forget about those who cried racism when questions were raised about how the quality of care would necessarily drop because there was never enough money to subsidize so many of the 30 million newly-insured ObamaCare enrollees.
Those on Medicare specifically need to remember that over $700 billion was taken from them to set up ObamaCare’s unwieldy bureaucracy.
As it unfolds, it’s obvious that ObamaCare actually doubles down on what makes the U.S. health care system so expensive.
The only real change with ObamaCare is the creation of a bureaucratic infrastructure that allows the government to centrally control the delivery of health care through regulations and mandates that are covered with a cloak of innocuous catch-phrases such as “meaningful use,” “accountable care organizations” and “medical home.”
Make no mistake. What ObamaCare distills down to is more control, not better quality health care. It is all about the destruction of the doctor-patient relationship and the takeover of health care choices.
Now, as ObamaCare enters its second year of operation, it’s evident that promises have not been delivered. People were not able to keep the doctors or insurance plans they liked. The government forced those with a moral objection to abortion to pay for it. The promised savings of $2,500 per family morphed into out-of-pocket costs of over $6,000 in some cases. Premiums are rising exponentially.
Earlier this year, it was reported that almost 215,000 doctors were not participating in ObamaCare, and that number is undoubtedly growing. It’s not growing because doctors don’t want to take care of patients, but because the reimbursements are so low that doctors can’t keep their practices open under those conditions. Furthermore, those who believe in the Hippocratic Oath reject ObamaCare because they refuse to work against the interest of their patients.
The decision by the Obama Administration to hide the true cost of health insurance until after the mid-term elections is politics as usual. It reeks of cynicism and hypocrisy, and it shows the contempt ObamaCare proponents have for the American people.
What they want kept secret is that it’s probably only going to get worse. Even if the insurance people like isn’t terminated, they will likely be priced out of it by higher premiums and out-of-pocket costs. Those with coverage through their employers now may lose it in the future because of the prohibitive costs to their bosses.
This is expected from ObamaCare’s true believers. It is designed to fill up the government’s health care exchanges with people who have nowhere else to go because the rug has been pulled out from beneath them. And that’s how they consolidate power.
Supporting the status quo will only reward those who have put us on a path to a single-payer health care disaster. It encourages irreversible destruction of the individualized patient care based on privacy and sanctity of the doctor-patient relationship that is the essence of our health care system.
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Dr. Elaina George, a member of the national advisory council of the Project 21 black leadership network, is a board-certified otolaryngologist and host of a weekly talk radio show, “Medicine On Call,” that explores health issues and the politics of medicine. Comments may be sent to [email protected].
Published by the National Center for Public Policy Research. Reprints permitted provided source is credited. New Visions Commentaries reflect the views of their author, and not necessarily those of Project 21, other Project 21 members, or the National Center for Public Policy Research, its board or staff.