How quickly time passes. Obamacare was signed into law one year ago today. Then, Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi (D. Ca.), said “we have to pass the bill before you can see what’s in it”.
One year later, let’s see what is in it.
So far, 1040 companies, unions and states, encompassing some 2.6 million employees, have been granted waivers from Obamacare. Why? Because if the waivers were not granted those employees would either have to pay premiums far in excess of what they could afford, or, their employer would have to drop their their coverage entirely because the employer couldn’t afford the coverage without laying off employees.
Remember the promise about children with pre-existing conditions will now be able to get their “stand alone” insurance? Many parents used “child-only” insurance for their children when the parents’ policy didn’t cover dependents, or when the parents didn’t have insurance. It was very inexpensive, but, it is no more, thanks to Obamacare. Companies have stopped writing “child only” insurance because the are forced to accept all children, regardless of their health, but cannot base the premium upon the child’s health. So, whether your child has a pre-existing condition or not, there is no insurance to be purchased.
And then, of course, we had the “human shields”. Those were the folks that couldn’t get any insurance at all because they had a pre-existing medical condition, and, if we didn’t do something soon, they would all die. Personally, I thought this provision of Obamacare made sense, but, so far, (in an update from our earlier post) only some 12,000 people have signed up for it…that’s 12,000 in the entire United States. Why? Because most states already offered insurance for these people.
On to costs… remember how President Obama insisted that this program would cost no more than $1 trillion over 10 years? Well, according to the Congressional Budget Office’s March 18, 2011 report (see page 14) , the cost is now estimated at $1.13 trillion. And, if you read the entire CBO report, you will learn that the new figure assumes pretty much non- existent increases in reimbursements for doctors who accept Medicare.
What a difference a year makes.