There have been strong campaigns against the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), or just the Affordable Care Act (ACA) or Obamacare. But dismantling a nearly seven-year-old Act will not be easy, which is purportedly on the agenda of the yet-to-be-formed Republican government. On January 4, 2017, Vice President-elect Mike Pence held a discussion with the Republican senators regarding repeal and replacement of Obamacare. However, there was disagreement on the issue among them.
Though the Republicans are moving closer to an agreement on the Act, there is still no final decision on how they will proceed to make their plan a success. While initially some Republicans like Senator Ted Cruz and House conservatives wanted the transition period to last no longer than six months, in an interview, Senator Cruz had said that the length of the transition period will be a subject of considerable debate.
As per Senator John Thune, most of the differences in the Senate are regarding replacement of Obamacare. He said that though repealing Obamacare might not be that difficult, budgetary considerations need to be considered for its replacement.
While Republicans like Senator John Cornyn want a Democratic buy-in on a replacement plan, the Democrats have made it clear that they would not go with the repeal. With a majority in the Congress, it is quite possible that Trump’s plans to change Obamacare could just pass without any Democrat voting for them. Despite promises from both the Democrats and the Republicans, they have never really bargained on Obamacare.
Now, the Democrats are accusing the Republicans to “make America sick again” with their plans to repeal Obamacare. However, the Republicans are sure of keeping their promise. On a whole, they are considering to retain the popular elements of Obamacare.
The ACA provides for increased access to mental health and substance use disorder services and health plans to cover preventive services like depression screening for adults at no extra cost. If the upcoming Donald Trump administration repeals the Act, millions of Americans could find themselves out of insurance coverage.
Despite opposition, Obamacare is going strong
While it has seen an increase in insurance premiums, Obamacare seems to be stronger than ever with more Americans having signed up for health plans through the AFA as of January 1, 2016. According to the U.S. Health and Human Services (HHS), sign-ups, including policy renewals, reached 8.8 million by December 31, 2016.
The ACA has granted many benefits to the Americans by expanding health care coverage to some 20 million Americans through expanded Medicaid, subsidized individual policies, and allowing young people to stay on their parents’ plans. With the repeal of the Act, many newly insured Americans would be at the risk of losing the coverage.
Cost of repealing Obamacare
As per Republicans, once they control the Congress and the White House, repealing the ACA will be their “first order of business.” While President Barack Obama is urging fellow Democrats to take all measures to preserve the law, the latter plan to hold the Republicans accountable for any disruptions that the appeal may trigger.
While repealing Obamacare would save federal money on the spending side, it would cost money on the revenue side. As per the Congressional Budget Office, repealing Obamacare would increase the federal deficit by $353 billion over a decade or $137 billion under favorable macroeconomic assumptions.
In a recent tweet, Trump asked Republicans to be careful as the Democrats owned the failed Obamacare disaster. As per the Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan, the ACA has failed and the healthcare system has been ruined and dismantled under Obamacare. He also said that under the Act, people are paying higher premiums every year and can’t opt for other options to get better insurance coverage. He called it a monopoly. However, the Democrats warned that repealing Obamacare would be worse. Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer said that repealing Obamacare would hurt rural hospitals.
Recovery and rehabilitation
If you know someone suffering from any mental problem, like depression or anxiety, it’s time to seek professional help. Contact Sovereign Health to avail our mental health facilities in Los Angeles or other parts of the U.S. Call us at our 24/7 helpline 866-973-7164 or chat online with our experts to know more about our mental health treatment centers in Los Angeles.