Is the Affordable Care Act Really Affordable?

Have you or someone you know ever needed to go to the doctor but wouldn’t because you were afraid of having to pay thousands of dollars in medical bills? In America, this happens more often than not. Everyday there are millions of people that go without medical care simply because they can’t afford to pay $10,000 for a simple check-up. It is even worse for the people that are in dire need of medical care because they just can’t afford the great amount of money getting that test they need, filling that prescription, or getting that surgery, will cost them. Believe it or not, this is most of America. Most people in America fall into two of three socioeconomic status groups: the lower class and middle class (also known as the working class).

Well then what is the solution to this problem? How do we try to get millions of uninsured people insured?

President Barack Obama thought he had the right idea when he created and enacted the Affordable Care Act (ACA) commonly known as ObamaCare. ObamaCare was supposed to bring affordable health insurance to the millions of people that lacked health insurance. However, it did quite the opposite. ObamaCare’s intentions were to nationally expand eligibility of Medicaid throughout the states so that lower class people could gain health insurance.

 However, states were given the choice to expand Medicaid eligibility or keep their Medicaid eligibility requirements. Due to a great number of states that chose not to participate, this left millions of people in a coverage gap.

Because people were in a coverage pay gap, just as this tweet describes, there are lots of people that complain that “they’re too rich for Medicaid, yet too poor for ObamaCare.”

According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, “nearly 5 million Americans will fall into a coverage gap because their home states didn’t expand Medicaid and their income is above current Medicaid eligibility thresholds but below the lower limit for federal tax credits. This creates a lot of problems for people because now, instead of paying for affordable health insurance, people will have to pay a wide variety of out-of-pocket costs every time they go to the doctor.

This isn’t the only issue with the Affordable Care Act. With the way the Affordable Care Act is set up, it forces people to sign up for health insurance. So someone that makes too much money to qualify for Medicaid but not enough money to obtain any of the ObamaCare subsidies can choose to not have health care at all….for a penalty of about 2% of one’s total gross income or $695 per adult and $347.50 per child. This penalty has to be paid for every month the person “chooses” to not obtain any health insurance. So not only are people not able to afford health insurance but now people have to pay a fine….for not being able to afford health insurance. obamacare-political-cartoon

In order to fix this issue, there needs to be better health care reform plans. There should be a healthcare reform plan that is not government regulated and it should be more concerned with what the individual person wants. The individual person should be able to choose the right healthcare plan and the right doctors that they believe best fits them. There are already reform plans that are in the works that are said to be better and more affordable than The Affordable Care Act.

Listen to my interview below with my dad to hear about his thoughts on The Affordable Care Act:

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