I want to expand just a little further on the PPACA. There has been so much controversy surrounding “obamacare” but what most fail to look at is the big picture. In my many years working at the Health Department, I’ve worn many hats. One of them being a CAC, Certified Application Counselor for the marketplace, and I still hold my certificate. The PPACA in the grand scheme of things is designed to save costs on healthcare. The mindset of those that think “forcing someone to pay for health insurance, when they can’t afford it or don’t need or making them pay fines…blah, blah, blah.” Haven’t read that far into it. First, for those that truly cannot afford it, and don’t qualify for the Medicaid expansion, fall into a small group of people that are exempt from those tax penalties, you can find a brief description here. http://blogs.findlaw.com/law_and_life/2013/09/who-is-exempt-from-obamacares-mandate.html
Second, savings in the long run. For those of us that payed for health insurance prior to the PPACA, we would continue to see a very large rise in premiums simply because people don’t have insurance. Those that are uninsured access the Emergency Department for primary care because they cannot afford to be seen in or establish a medical home. Most won’t pay that medical bill because the Emergency Department is unaffordable that cost has to be offset somewhere. Typically by the time someone seeks care their chronic illness is so out of control that the cost to care for it is astronomical and an emergency room physician cannot treat a chronic illness, they can only treat the chief complaint, so these chronic illnesses get further out of control. Health insurance companies rely on the premiums of the healthy to take care of the sick. I do agree that the cost of health care in the United States is astronomical, however, healthcare delivery is better than that of say Canada….