Healthcare Bill Now Exists

Now that the House of Representatives has passed the health care bill, we have something concrete with which to  agree/disagree. Previously, we had a lot of different things floating around. While I would have been happier had the bill failed–I’m also glad that the target has stopped moving.

Betsy McCaughey gives us an idea of what is to be expected of us, should this bill be passed as it now stands. Here are a few items which stood out from her list:

Sec. 224 (p. 118) provides that 18 months after the bill becomes law, the Secretary of Health and Human Services will decide what a “qualified plan” covers and how much you’ll be legally required to pay for it. That’s like a banker telling you to sign the loan agreement now, then filling in the interest rate and repayment terms 18 months later.

[…]

Sec. 303 (pp. 167-168) makes it clear that, although the “qualified plan” is not yet designed, it will be of the “one size fits all” variety. The bill claims to offer choice—basic, enhanced and premium levels—but the benefits are the same. Only the co-pays and deductibles differ. You will have to enroll in the same plan, whether the government is paying for it or you and your employer are footing the bill.

[…]

Secs. 2521 and 2533 (pp. 1379 and 1437) establishes racial and ethnic preferences in awarding grants for training nurses and creating secondary-school health science programs. For example, grants for nursing schools should “give preference to programs that provide for improving the diversity of new nurse graduates to reflect changes in the demographics of the patient population.” And secondary-school grants should go to schools “graduating students from disadvantaged backgrounds including racial and ethnic minorities.”

There are many more things (as one might imagine for a roughly 2,000 page legal document, but even these three are enough to give one indigestion. None of us would sign a loan document which leaves everything up to the bank. None of us is happy with one-size-fits-all approaches to schooling, housing, automobiling (or a host of other things). None of us care about the ethnicity of people being trained for anything.

I’m going to be reading as much of the bill as I can. Ignorance and a belief that those who run this country (no matter who they may be at any given time) are just going to “do the right thing” will only cause more problems down the road.