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Sunday, October 20, 2013

Republicans Offer No Alternative to Obamacare - Pointing Fingers Without Solutions

Republicans are masterful at pointing fingers but rarely do they offer solutions. This is clearly the situation with their compulsive political obsession against the health care reform law known as Obamacare.

Some 48 million Americans were uninsured in 2012, which was not statistically different from the prior year.
http://www.kaiserhealthnews.org/stories/2013/september/17/census-numbers-uninsured-numbers-remain-nearly-unchanged.aspx

Republicans circle their political wagons around their fanatical opposition to Obamacare. Nevertheless, they don't offer an alternative to how our US health care system can afford to pay for 48 million uninsured, if they don't have insurance coverage.

When 48 million people are uninsured, they use the expensive hospital emergency departments for illness care. These bills are seldom paid. Hospitals are required to treat everyone who presents in an emergency department but they're unable to recover the cost of providing this "charity care". Therefore, hospitals pass the cost of caring for uninsured over to those who pay for their care in a very clever formula known as "cost shifting". In other words, a small percentage of every charity care bill is passed on to everyone else who pays their bills. Republicans offer no solution to this dynamic. Apparently, Republicans like cost shifting. If they don't like it, they'd do something to prevent the practice. This "something" could be "insurance exchanges." 

There's a well established precedence for insurance exchanges already working in Massachusetts. Republican Governor Mitt Romney designed this law. Governor Romney's support for the health care reform law, that later became the model for Obamacare, is working in Massachusetts and it was a Republican governor who put it in place. Now, this same law is not worthy of helping all Americans.

Therefore, if Republicans want to repeal Obamacare, just because they don't like it, they must find an alternative to replace it.  

Otherwise, 48 million Americans who are waiting to sign up for Obamacare insurance coverage, so they'll be able to pay their hospital bills, won't have any alternative but to continue to use emergency care if Republicans have their way. This is very bad for protecting the health of our Americana workforce. Americans must be healthy to be productive. Furthermore, the cost shifting of charity care becomes impossible to fund because this add-on drives up the cost of all health care.

America has an enormously successful health care system.This sytem is imploding in may places because the cost of providing care isn't being recovered through reimbursement. Republicans don't seem to think the benefits of our nation's world renown medical science is worth protecting, by allowing people to buy health insurance to pay for care. They don't like Obamacare but won't offer any alternative.

Until Republicans provide an alternative to Obamacare, those among them who screech, like Senator Ted Cruz and Congesswoman Michele Bachman, should be prevented from pointing fingers, when they offer no solutions.

Link to Affordable Care Act:  http://www.hhs.gov/opa/affordable-care-act/

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