Ask Congressional Representatives to Remove 2017 Deadline from the Affordable Care Act
Sponsored by Cathilia Flores
For more information send email to Cathilia
This year Congress passed landmark health care reform legislation that includes many solid provisions that will benefit Americans. States have two approaches toward universal coverage:
1- set up a health insurance exchange (like Massachusetts), or
2- apply for a waiver in order to set up their own system that provides equal or better coverage for constituents.
Under the insurance exchange approach, governmental entities will offer private insurance policies to the uninsured and small employers. Federal subsidies will make the premiums affordable for low- to middle-income people. These tax dollars will subsidize private insurance companies.
Unfortunately, states must spend time and money to set up Massachusetts-type insurance exchanges by 2014. They cannot apply for waivers until 2017. This delay does not make sense.
> If a state can develop a different approach not based on the insurance exchange that covers everyone and controls costs it should be allowed to do so.
> The Massachusetts exchange approach may not be appropriate for a poor state with a small population and large numbers of uninsured.
> States should be allowed to continue their role as laboratories for experimentation and should not have to wait three years for a waiver.
What We Are Asking
Call Senators Bingaman and Udall and Representative Teague and ask them to remove the 2017 deadline from the Affordable Care Act.
Let them know that New Mexico should be allowed to implement the plan that works best for New Mexico and not be forced to develop a Massachusetts-type insurance exchange.
For More Information
The following links may be helpful to those determined to understand the Affordable Care Act.
The Kaiser Family Foundation offers extensive in-depth information on health care legislation and policy and amazing state-by-state health data. Click here if you’ve ever wondered how New Mexico compares with other states on infant mortality, teen pregnancy, HIV/AIDS, etc.
The New York Times blog—Prescriptions, Making Sense of the Health Care Law—tries to do just that on a daily basis. Click here for the blog’s annotated list of resources on the Web.
Slate’s Timothy Noah has been covering the health care reform law on a regular basis. Click here for an exhaustive list of Web resources along with Noah’s blunt assessments of the worth or worthlessness of each.
A Practical Guide Forward for Progressives on Health Care is published in Salon. One of the authors has also written about the 2017 waiver issue in a technical article for the Center for Policy Analysis in San Francisco.