The patient protections afforded by the Affordable Care Act were the most important parts of the legislation and often the most overlooked.
In the recent rush by Republicans to pass health care legislation, their whole focus was on the money side of it, with little or no attention paid to the people who would be affected by this legislation.
Citing rising premiums and declining participation by insurers, the Republicans tried to paint a bleak picture of an “imploding” or variously “exploding” Affordable Care Act. Another Republican talking point was their refutation of President Barack Obama’s assertion that “people could keep their doctors.” However, the doctors whose services are or are not covered by any particular plan is a mandate of that particular insurer, not of the Affordable Care Act.
That being said, in 2015 I carried a policy from Coventry for which I paid $108/month. In 2016, I carried a policy from United Health Care that cost me $42/month. Having turned 65 on March 11, I only needed coverage for January and February, so I carried a Blue Cross/Blue Shield policy that cost me $0/month. In that time, I was never refused service by any health care professional. The Affordable Care Act is not perfect, but for me it hasn’t been the catastrophe that the Republicans make it out to be.
My hope is that Republicans will work with Democrats to improve the Affordable Care Act and work toward universal health care for everyone.