Letter: Work together to replace ACA
Donna Yost’s guest opinion regarding the Republican’s replacement version of the Affordable Care Act referred to a column from the Colorado Republican congressmen. First, we must keep in mind that there are many proposed plans coming from both the Senate and the House, and none are even close to making it to the floor for a vote.
Second, the versions I have seen all keep features of the ACA in place, specifically 1) no pre-existing conditions clause may be applied, so you don’t have to worry about changing jobs or insurance companies, 2) children up to age 26 can remain on their parents’ plan, 3) there will be no annual or lifetime limits imposed on the policies, 4) nothing specific has been mentioned about changing the rating for genders, and even if this did go back to gender rating, women were more expensive in the younger ages and men were more expensive in the older ages, 5) many options have been discussed for the subsidies or tax credits that would be available, but nothing specific yet.
In addition, insurance companies do not have an overhead of 30 percent. A Price Waterhouse Cooper audit just before the ACA was enacted showed that 87 cents of a dollar of a premium was paid out in health-care benefits on average for the industry. This has increased over the past six years.
I do agree that both sides of the aisle need to come together to approve a plan that is better than what is in place right now. The Affordable Care Act is not affordable at all for those who do not receive a tax credit to help pay the premiums. It is hurting the middle class and forcing many families to go without insurance. It has also driven insurance companies out of the market, with 31 percent of all counties in the United States having only one insurance company to choose from in the individual market (including Garfield and Pitkin counties). The ACA is not working, and we need something better now. But both parties need to come together to make it work.
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