Obamacare has been confirmed as the law of the land, and the common belief that it was unconstitutional has been shown to be incorrect.
The Affordable Care Act will affect all of us, so what other common beliefs that people have about this law are also wrong? The following is a list of common misperceptions that I have observed.
Common belief: Obamacare is a government takeover of health care.
ACTUALLY: The Affordable Care Act has no government plan. It preserves private plans and strengthens the private insurance market, making it easy to shop for a plan you like, while protecting people and their health.
Common belief: the law is just about insurance and not about cost.
ACTUALLY: the law promotes new models, innovations, and research to start improving care while decreasing costs. Here in Whatcom County, the Whatcom Alliance for Healthcare Advancement (WAHA) has received one of these grants!
Common belief: the law is just about insurance and not about health.
ACTUALLY: the law creates a national Prevention Fund, and invests in training for doctors, nurses, and other needed health professionals
Common belief: the law is hurts small businesses.
ACTUALLY: the law will help most small businesses a lot! Companies with less than than 50 employees get tax credits for up to 35% of employee health insurance
premiums. Beginning in 2014, tax credits rise up to 50% of insurance premiums.
Common belief: the law just increases premiums and costs for families.
ACTUALLY: health premiums were skyrocketing before the law, and this is a major reason for the law! Insurance companies will now have to explain why they are raising rates, and the reasons will be published on a publicly available website. If insurance companies don’t spend most of your premium dollars on health care, they are now required to send you a rebate at the end of the year.
Common belief: the law hurts Medicare and seniors.
ACTUALLY: the law saves 600 million dollars by reducing extra payments to insurance companies, and strengthens Medicare to help seniors afford prescription drugs, get annual checkups with no co-pays and to make Medicare work better for seniors and doctors.
Common belief: We can’t afford Obamacare
ACTUALLY: the law's expense replaces costs we already pay that have been going through the roof for years, and we can’t afford not to have it. The law extends coverage, promotes access to the right care, in the right place, and at the right time. This is one way the Affordable Care Act was designed to save money by keeping people healthier.
Common belief: The law is too complicated to understand.
ACTUALLY: The basic facts are simple. 32 million more American citizens will be insured. There will be help for those who cannot afford coverage. Most insurance company abuses will end. We will start building a system that improves quality and controls cost for all of us.
If you want to be informed, ignore most of what you hear and visit HealthCare.gov which is an easy to use site that explains the law and how it is being rolled out.