Did anyone read the article in Sunday's paper by Jim Duffett?
It starts off stating that the ruling in the VA court, which held that part of the Affordable Health Care Act is unconstitutional, bears no more weight than the other cases where the law was upheld, and that the ruling itself is nothing more than political hype. Well. This ruling is much more important, because it pushes the question closer to the Supreme Court. He then goes on to assume that the Supreme Court will overturn this ruling and uphold the law as written. How does Mr. Duffett know this?
He writes that this health care act has already made a difference in the lives of millions of Illinoisans. With this I will agree. So far, the biggest difference is that almost every health insurance carrier in Illinois has either done away with or is going to do away with individual policies for children. The government told the companies they could not deny coverage based on health, so the companies stopped selling the policies all together. Yes, children cannot be denied coverage, but only if the parent has an individual policy with that company and puts his or her child on the policy. If the parent is ineligible, the kid is uninsured. This also prevents people from moving from one policy to another for a better price.
He writes that 2.5 million Illinois residents under the age of 65 with pre-existing conditions will now be able to get health insurance. I'm not sure what "now" means, but you can look forward to that change in 2014. And technically, those with pre-existing conditions could purchase insurance before through CHIPS, which is a state funded program.
He writes that 1.77 million Illinoisans on Medicare will no longer have to pay for preventative services. Those services didn't suddenly become free, so if the patient isn't paying for them, who is?
This Affordable Health Care Act is here to stay. Those who drone about repeal are just doing so for political reasons. However, it is time to be honest about what it is, and what it is not. That it contains some verbiage that may be unconstitutional is yet to be decided. The law is not settled, regardless of the ruling of one judge in Virginia, or the prediction of one health care advocate in East Central Illinois.