Commentary

Beginning of the End: The ‘Un’Affordable Care Act Continues to Unravel

Twila Brase
By Twila Brase | August 15, 2016 | 12:23 PM EDT

Obamacare banner hangs torn on the side of a building. (AP Photo)

Health plan companies left and right are seriously questioning their involvement in Obamacare or dropping out altogether. And these are heavy hitters—UnitedHealthcare, Humana, Aetna and some Blue Cross Blue Shield companies. Cooperatives established under the law are collapsing as well. Just seven of the 23 remain.

Citizens’ Council for Health Freedom (CCHF, www.cchfreedom.org) points to these occurrences as the beginning of the end—the unraveling of the Affordable Care Act. President Obama’s legacy act is in deep trouble.

These departures are the “tremors” before the earthquake, the total implosion of Obamacare. Now it’s time to repeal the law and head back to health freedom.

Insurance companies will issue double-digit premium increases this fall, on or around Nov. 1, when Obamacare enrollment begins again. And of special note—premium increases and open enrollment will come just a week before the election.

The impending expiration of two of the federal “3R” subsidy programs that were instituted to shield health plans from the high cost of adding uninsured people with pre-existing conditions—reinsurance and risk corridors—is one reason premiums will skyrocket. Some politicians want to establish a national government insurance company—the public option—and some insurers suggest Congress create permanent federal subsidies to keep them in the game, but isn’t it time we go back to the affordability of freedom and free markets?

This is where CCHF’s new initiative, The Wedge of Health Freedom (www.JointheWedge.com), comes in.

The Wedge restores affordability and patient-centered care and is a new way of doing health care that puts patients and doctors in control and makes affordable pricing available to the insured, the uninsured and the subsidized.

Wedge-like practices are already operating nationwide but many Americans don’t know about them. So CCHF is branding this affordable option as The Wedge of Health Freedom to draw the public’s attention to the patient-centered, freedom-embracing slice of American health care that is mostly invisible to the public today. We aim to make The Wedge visible, protect it and grow it. The Wedge, focused on the delivery of care, will let patients and doctors come together in an affordable, confidential relationship that benefits both of them.

Twila Brase is president and co-founder of Citizens’ Council for Health Freedom (CCHF, www.cchfreedom.org), a Minnesota-based national organization dedicated to preserving patient-centered health care and protecting patient and privacy rights. Celebrating its 20th year, CCHF exists to protect health care choices and patient privacy. Brase, a registered nurse, has been called one of the “100 Most Powerful People in Health Care” and one of “Minnesota’s 100 Most Influential Health Care Leaders.”

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