An insurance insider says he thinks the country will move forward with the Affordable Care Act but lobbying will not stop. Healthcare reform expert, Senior Analyst for the Center of Public Integrity, and author Wendell Potter spoke during the League of Women Voter's panel discussion at Illinois Wesleyan University. Potter is the author of "Deadly Spin," a book about corporate P-R and its effects on healthcare.
Potter shared the stage with two local physicians Dr. Dory Jarzabowski, Dr.Steven Kindred, and the Executive Director of the Community Health Care Clininc Angie McLaughlin. Jarzabowski, Kindred, and McLaughlin formed a concerned, experienced panel of local opinions and questions about the legislation and its effects upon the Bloominton-Normal community. Potter answered questions and took comments from the panel as well as audience members throughout the evening.
Potter says insurance companies will spend a lot of money to convince the public and lawmakers to change provisions in the Affordable Care Act, also known as 'Obamacare,' like mandates prohibiting charging older people more for coverage than younger people. He says the Act forces insurance companies to charge no more than 3 times as much for coverage to older people. He says insurance companies want to see a ratio like five to one...
"Their masters at getting us to vote against our own self-interst, because I use to be in that line of work and I know how effective they can be."
Potter says insurance companies make a lot of money through charging by age, and, he says it's their advantage to avoid selling coverage to older people who typically need more care. Potter also provided a detailed analysis of the Individual Mandate, one of the msot unpopular aspects of the ACA, that it cannot function without Republicans want to eliminate the mandate by, which Potter says goes against some the party's own ideas...
"It's easy to be opposed to the invidual mandate, which interestingly was a Republican idea. It came out of the Heritage Foundation in the 1990s, as an alternative to what was then called "Hillary Health Care Plan" the Clinton health care reform plan."
As unpopular as the Individual Mandate may be, Potter is confident that Obamacare will remain in effect due to its more popular aspects such as protection for individuals with pre-existing conditions.
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