Health care reform after SCOTUS: Hard decisions needed to avoid health sector meltdown

Article Highlights

  • The #SCOTUS upheld most of the #ACA, giving the White House cause to breathe a sigh of relief.

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  • With one caveat, proponents claim that the #Obama health care reform will proceed as scheduled. Don’t bet on it. @JoeAntos

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  • The #SCOTUS may have settled some issues, but its decision opened up new areas of uncertainty. #ACA

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The Supreme Court upheld most of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), giving the White House cause to breathe a sigh of relief. The court ruled the individual mandate to buy insurance constitutional, requiring only that we call the penalty for noncompliance a tax. The only real setback was in Medicaid. The federal government’s threat to take away all Medicaid funding from a state that did not expand eligibility to everyone with incomes below 133% of the poverty level was declared coercive and unconstitutional. With that caveat, proponents claim that the Obama health care reform will proceed as scheduled.

Don’t bet on it. The Supreme Court may have settled some issues, but its decision opened up new areas of uncertainty. Will the renamed individual mandate penalty/tax be effective in leading both healthy and unhealthy people to buy insurance? Will states, facing serious fiscal problems, expand eligibility for Medicaid? More fundamentally, will the myriad changes called for by the ACA be implemented on time and with the impact promised by the White House? 

Read the full text here from the July/August issue of American Health and Drug Benefits or from the AHDB website here.

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Joseph
Antos

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