Monday, March 27, 2017

Democratic Ideas on How to Improve Health Care Are Complicated Too

I've been thinking that Democrats should be out there offering ways to fix Obamacare which they always just describe as "not perfect". If they're to learn anything from the election they can't just depend on the GOP ideas being bad, they have offer good ones themselves. Nancy LeTourneau explains in Washington Monthly Democratic Ideas on How to Improve Health Care Are Complicated Too

While Obamacare certainly wasn’t single payer and ultimately didn’t include a public option, most of it tackled the issue of how health insurance is provided. The expansion of Medicaid is a great example. And while many of the ideas being articulated now are important for Democrats to consider, it is also significant to remember that there are still 19 states that have refused to do so. Millions of Americans would have access to insurance and health care if that was tackled.

I hadn't known about this detail (or have forgotten it):

But that battle obscured the one that happened over the public option in the House. There the disagreement was over what kind of public option would be included. This is where the issues of insurance and cost of care overlapped. Progressive Democrats tended to support what came to be known as a “robust” public option. It would tie payment to providers to the Medicare payment system. Conservative Democrats favored a public option that allowed HHS to negotiate payments with providers. In the end, Conservative Democrats won and it was their plan which was included in the House bill and later removed via reconciliation with the Senate. Interestingly enough, CBO said that premiums for that public option would be slightly higher than the private plans offered in the exchange. A later CBO report found that a “robust” public option would produce premiums that are 7-8% lower than private plans.

Any, now that Trump is off saying that the Democrats own Obamacare (which they always did) and it's going to both implode and explode (because those don't mean different things), I'd like to see the Democrats pushing for solutions they'd like to see. The Republicans clearly, at some point are going to have a conversation about it, we should be prepared for the argument.

No comments: