Letter: Continued attacks on Affordable Care Act contemptible

Nov. 14, 2013 @ 11:38 PM

Editor,

The four year long attack on the Affordable Care Act remains a priority for the majority of a political party stumbling in all directions seeking credibility. This party continues to be relentless in denying health care coverage for the poorest for no other reason but that they can.

Twelve of 15 of the so-called Bible Belt states, including Tennessee, because of their preference of ideology over moral decency have refused the Medicaid expansion option and money; therefore, leaving hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of the poorest without coverage.

On the other hand, to name two of the 17 states and the DC area which take the health care of their citizens seriously, the states of Oregon and Washington which opened state run exchanges and expanded Medicaid have, in Oregon, lowered the number of uninsured by 10 percent and in Washington 62,000 persons have enrolled in the first three weeks of the process.

Most individuals and families will not need coverage from the ACA. Those qualifying for Medicaid expansion will be provided the dignity of health care if politically driven irresponsibility hasn’t denied the opportunity.

Others on the individual insurance market will seek high quality insurance through the exchanges. Some will choose to remain dismissive and ignorant of the ACA, such as a married couple living in Franklin, Tenn., during a recent interview on a FOX News program. They expressed anger after being told by their insurance agent of a substantial increase to their policy in order to comply with the ACA.

What that agent did not tell them, and was later reported by another source, was that a similar plan costing much less than their current plan could be found on the ACA exchange; however, the couple stated they would not shop the exchange because they oppose the health care law.

They should consider this – if that accident or serious illness strikes them or a family member, those that have encouraged you to do so will not suffer the financial consequences.

Misleading and false information from some media sources exploit and exaggerate insurance companies’ claims toward the ACA. First and foremost insurance companies are in business to make a profit; providing coverage and paying claims are secondary.

The small number of people being reported as being dropped from existing policies, in all likelihood, is because these policies do not conform to the mandated coverage requirements and profit restrictions of the ACA.

As these media sources report the half truths and lies of a fraction of the populace, they conveniently neglect to report the stories of the poor deprived of coverage from the Medicaid expansion monies their governors and states declined to accept.

How contemptible is it to use these men, women and children as political pawns? No amount of excuses can justify this as anything other than cynical and, as usual, it’s the poor that suffer.

Bill Dayton

Sevierville