Letter to the Editor: A Look at Future Health Care Provisions for Seniors by Doug Curler
By Doug Curler
For the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), you do not realize what you had until you are going to lose it.
Well after getting total control of our national government, and for the 97th time, the repeal of the Affordable Care Act will now happen. What we have to look forward to is what we will lose after ACA is gone.
While nothing is really perfect, this is what Wisconsin citizens of Langlade County will be losing since the Republican-controlled House of Representatives and the Republican-controlled U.S. Senate, supported by the Republican President-elect, voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act with nothing of offer as a replacement.
This is what you got in the ACA (Obamacare) and will be losing: a) people with Medicare can get key preventive services for free and also receive a 50% discount on brand name drugs in the Medicare “donut hole”; b) prohibiting the denial of coverage for pre-existing conditions; c) prohibiting insurance companies from rescinding coverage. In the past, insurance companies could search for an error or other technical mistake on a customer’s application and use this error to deny payment for services when he or she got sick; d) eliminating lifetime limits on insurance coverage; e) providing free preventive care; f) under the law, young adults were allowed to stay on their parents’ plan until they turned 26 years old; g) expanding coverage for early retirees, creating a $5 billion program to provide needed financial help for employment-based plans to continue to provide valuable coverage to people who retire between the ages of 55 and 65, as well as their spouses and dependents; h) allowing states to cover more people on Medicaid. States received federal matching funds for covering some additional low-income individuals and families under Medicaid for whom federal funds were not previously available. i) providing free preventive care for seniors. The law provides certain free preventive services, such as annual wellness visits and personalized prevention plans for seniors on Medicare; j) prohibiting discrimination due to pre-existing conditions or gender; k) increasing access to Medicaid. Americans who earn less than 133% of the poverty level (approximately $14,000 for an individual and $29,000 for a family of four) will be eligible to enroll in Medicaid. States will receive 100% federal funding for the first three years to support this expanded coverage, phasing to 90% federal funding in subsequent years; l) lower costs for prescription drugs. Because the ACA is closing the prescription drug “donut hole” (under Part D), 90,303 Wisconsin seniors saved $94 million on drugs in 2015 at an average of $1,036 per beneficiary; m) actually slowed the cost of health care premiums by controlling cost.
What will you get? Trump Care.
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