April 17, 2014
Access to preventive care at no charge to the patient is a key tenet of the federal health law. But questions about what qualifies as “preventive” are causing discord between doctors and patients, particularly when it comes to the traditional annual checkup.
Some patients, anticipating free visits to address all their health issues—past, present and potential—are upset to find that only some of that qualifies as preventive care, exempt from deductibles and copays.
“Patients are scheduling ‘physicals’ because physicals are free,” says Randy Wexler, a family-medicine physician in Columbus, Ohio. “But they come in and say, ‘I’ve been having headaches. My back has been bothering me and I’m depressed.’ That’s not part of a physical. That will trigger a copay.”
via Discord Over Doctors’ Bills and What Is Considered ‘Preventive’ – WSJ.com.
March 27, 2014
With zero help from the Obamacare website, I eventually figured out that there was one lone insurance plan that would cover treatment at a reputable hospital. The downside is, no doctors take it.
So my only two health insurance options — and yours, too, as soon as the waivers expire, America! — are: (1) a plan that no doctors take; or (2) a plan that no hospitals take. You either pay for all your doctor visits and tests yourself, or you pay for your cancer treatment yourself. And you pay through the nose in either case.
That’s not insurance! It’s a huge transfer of wealth from people who work for a living to those who don’t, accomplished by forcing the workers to buy insurance that’s not insurance. Obamacare has made actual health insurance “illegal.”
It’s not “insurance” when what I want to insure against isn’t covered, but paying for other people’s health care needs — defined broadly — is mandatory.
It’s as if you wanted to buy a car, so you paid for a Toyota — but then all you got was a 10-speed bike, with the rest of your purchase price going to buy cars, bikes and helmets for other people.
via Screw You, Mickey Kaus – Ann Coulter – Page full.
March 24, 2014
“There are plenty of [Obamacare] horror stories being told. All of them are untrue,” said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid not long ago on the floor of the Senate.
Four years after the president signed the measure into law, there are, of course, many real stories of hardship under Obamacare. An extensive list of which is included at the end of this article. But when Reid made those remarks, he wasn’t repeating words carelessly dashed off by some 20-something staffer. Rather, he was repeating a meme that has become common among those who economist Thomas Sowell dubs “the Anointed,” intellectuals whose belief in their own superior knowledge and virtue leads to their misperception that they are an anointed elite more qualified to make decisions for the rest of us in order to lead humanity to a better life.
via The “No Obamacare Horror Stories” Fairy Tale.
March 20, 2014
Here are the 14 “hardship exemptions” that HHS says releases you from the Obamacare tax penalty, and the documentation you’ll need to prove that you qualify for each of these waivers.
One criteria is missing. You can avoid the tax by being incarcerated for one day each month, according to Allison Bell. And pay close heed to catchall criteria #14 – “You experienced another hardship in obtaining health insurance”. As for the documentation that HHS says is required to claim this hardship , it merely notes: “Please submit documentation if possible.”
via 14 Ways To Avoid The Obamacare Tax (Actually 15 if you include ‘brief incarceration’).
March 17, 2014
By accepting a tax credit, low-income or lower-middle class families face significant tax ramifications and potential financial risk. Congress has changed the rules twice on consumers for the credits, making the income cliffs steeper, and fully equipping the IRS to claw back overpaid subsidies (unlike the individual mandate penalty).
The flip side of the tax credits is almost unknown to the general public.
via Are ObamaCare’s Tax Credits Harmless? The Little Understood Dark Side Of The Subsidies.
February 26, 2014
As the Obama administration raced to meet its self-imposed deadline for online health insurance markets, security experts working for the government worried that state computer systems could become a back door for hackers.
Documents provided to The Associated Press show that more than two-thirds of state systems that were supposed to tap into federal computers to verify sensitive personal information for coverage were initially rated as “high risk” for security problems.
Back-door attacks have been in the news, since the hackers who stole millions of customers’ credit and debit card numbers from Target are believed to have gained access through a contractor’s network.
via Health reform law posed cybersecurity challenges | Modern Healthcare.
February 7, 2014
Here’s the bottom line: Obamacare has failed miserably on nearly every major promise made about it (Grade: F). The processes used to enact and implement the law have been tarnished by actions of questionable legality and a pervasive lack of transparency (Grade: D). On actual outcomes, Obamacare has fared better in the short term (Grade: C+), but there are worrisome signs that by most measures, the law’s performance will get significantly worse by the time final grades are handed out.
I’ll admit, I’m a pretty tough grader. In this era of grade inflation, some Americans may be inclined to be more generous. But after doing this for nearly four decades, I think I’m a fairly good judge of health policy work and its likelihood of success when put into practice. We’re only at midterm, but I’d have to say the long-term outlook for Obamacare is very poor indeed.
via An Obamacare Report Card | The Weekly Standard.
February 6, 2014
Any tax credit that phases out will discourage work. The child tax credit, for example, is gradually reduced by $50 for each $1,000 above the cap (currently $110,000 for a couple). In effect, that imposes up to a 5 percent marginal tax hike on income earned above $110,000. But Obamcare’s effective marginal tax hike is 100 percent or more on the first $4,000 to $25,000 a couple makes above the income eligibility threshold, depending on age.
Whether or not it’s a good thing to encourage workers to cut their hours or quit their jobs is a matter of debate among Obamacare’s supporters and opponents. Liberals point out that some people will gladly choose to work less now that they have greater economic security. But for Americans teetering on the edge of Obamacare’s subsidy cliff, the decision to work more in order to earn less isn’t much of a free choice at all.
via Watch Out for Obamacare’s Subsidy Cliff: Earn $1 More in Wages, and You Could Pay $20,000 More for Insurance | The Weekly Standard.
February 6, 2014
steep Medicare home health cuts implemented as part of the Affordable Care Act put this growth at considerable risk. Newly implemented administration policies, which slash home health care funding by 14 percent over the next four years, are already resulting in a downturn in job growth, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Now, unfortunately for our patients and our state’s economy, these new cuts will force approximately 40 percent of all home health providers to operate at a net loss – meaning they will face the risk of bankruptcy and closure. The federal Medicare agency’s own estimate means that this regulation will directly affect nearly 5,000 small-business providers that today serve nearly 1.5 million seniors and are responsible for nearly 500,000 jobs from coast to coast.
In North Carolina, estimates indicate that nearly 28 percent of our home health agencies will be forced to operate at a net loss by 2017. These agencies at greatest risk serve 29,224 seniors and employ 11,356 North Carolinians – who will likely find their care and their jobs in peril.
via The ACA’s cuts to Medicare threaten home health care jobs, patients | Other Views | NewsObserver.com.
February 5, 2014
Hampton Roads, VA ABC affiliate WVEC reports local resident Rich Guillory had his personal information stolen after enrolling in ObamaCare…
via Virginia Man’s Personal Information Stolen After Using ObamaCare Website.