In one sense Democrats and Republicans agree on the need to reform healthcare in the
The difference is the goal of Republicans in Congress is to lower taxes,
particularly for the wealthiest while the goal of Democrats is to make sure
more people are covered by insurance. Republicans in Congress can’t seem to
agree on how far to push, the Freedom Caucus, aka TEA Party, want to take away
healthcare for everyone receiving coverage through the Medicaid expansion.
That’s in addition to the folks the so called moderate Republicans want to
throw to the wolves by reducing subsidies on the Exchange such that they could
no longer afford insurance. United States
Whether or not the motivation for cutting off the federal assistance is at least partially racist the fact is that the rate of uninsured among Hispanics is 30.7%, more than twice the rate of African-Americans and three times that of whites.
Medicaid expansion critics like Gov. Abbott object to providing coverage to able-bodied adults who can work. What they don’t talk about is that many Texans work a full time job and still don’t earn enough to qualify for subsidies on the exchange but they earn too much to qualify for Medicaid.
Speaker of the House Paul Ryan’s latest healthcare “reform” proposal Medicaid would be turned into what is called block grants the amount that the federal government gives to states to administer Medicaid would be reduced. A block grant would allow much more freedom to states like
Texas to set their own
criteria for who deserves healthcare and how much care would be paid for. Since
under Ryan’s proposal funding would also be reduced some people would lose
coverage or have access to less healthcare.
One group most likely to suffer are those in nursing homes since a very large fraction of Medicaid is spent to subsidize the fees since Medicare doesn’t cover it and their social security checks usually aren’t enough either. Once those folks run out of their retirement savings the only thing keeping them in the nursing home is Medicaid. If Paul Ryan were to get his way be prepared to close in the garage and put grandma in there because there will be no where else for her to go.
I think most of us would agree that the folks we, know regardless of income, deserve to be able to see a doctor when they’re sick and fill the prescriptions needed to recover. I’ll bet most of believe that every child should get the healthcare they need to grow up strong and healthy. Recent studies show that over 60% agree that it would be so much simpler and better if everyone was on Medicare. And it’s not just liberals who believe this, 30% of Republicans agree.
Representative John Conyers of
Michigan has filed a bill in Congress named
the Expanded and Improved Medicare for All Act, H.R. 676. The bill that would
not only insure that every American could go to the doctor when sick but it
would also save the 20% that insurance companies now get to spend on overhead
because Medicare is just that much more efficient.
If you wondered what that bunch of demonstrators out in front of the
last Saturday were
doing; we were calling on our congressman, Vicenté Gonzalez, to join other
Texans in co-sponsoring H.R. 676. Guadalupe
Published in the Seguin Gazette April 14, 2017