American Elephants

The Story of an Unpublished World War II Propaganda Poster: by The Elephant's Child

(h/t: Vanderleun)

ObamaCare Continues to Strew Wreckage in its Wake by The Elephant's Child

The euphemistically named Affordable Health Care and Patient Protection Act better known as ObamaCare continues to strew wreckage in its wake.

— The University of Virginia announced today that due to “rising health care costs,” some working spouses will become ineligible for University insurance coverage.

Working spouse provision: Starting Jan. 1, spouses who have access to coverage through their own employer will no longer be eligible for coverage under U.Va.’s plan. Spouses who do not have coverage elsewhere can remain on the employee’s plan, and coverage of children is not affected.

The University goes on to blame ObamaCare for an anticipated $7 million cost increase next year.

Provisions of the federal Affordable Care Act are projected to add $7.3 million to the cost of the University health plan in 2014 alone. Federal health care reform will create new costs related to the “individual mandate” that requires all Americans to have health care coverage (or pay a penalty).

The University went all out in supporting ObamaCare back in 2010, writing to tell their congressman, Tom Perriello that they believed” that providing affordable health coverage for more citizens of the Commonwealth is critical.”

— United Parcel Service, Inc. (UPS) announced plans to remove 15,000 spouses from its medical plan because they are eligible for coverage elsewhere. The company cites ObamaCare to explain the decision.

Many working couples understandably opt for the better insurance plan when they have a choice.  Looks like that choice is ending.

— Up in Vermont, two governors over the last decade have worked hard to control health care costs and increase access to health insurance for Vermont’s uninsured. Now Governor Shumlin moved further and is moving Vermont to a single-payer system. What has been the impact of that two-decade long effort?

In 1991, Vermont’s health care costs per capita were the 9th lowest in the nation, 12% below the national average. By 2009, Vermont’s health care costs had risen to 13th highest in the nation, 12% above the national average of $6,815. The percent of Vermonters without health insurance, according to the census bureau, was 11.2%. In 2011, twelve years later, the percent of uninsured had fallen by one percentage point to 10.1%. Higher costs and no impact.

— Yesterday I wrote that you could probably expect more of your medical care to be done in your neighborhood pharmacy — which was sheer speculation on my part. Across the water, the British National Health Service has decided that physiotherapists and podiatrists will now be allowed to prescribe medicine for their patients without doctor supervision.  Lots of puffery about what a good idea this is, but the excuse is freeing up time for GPs. With “routine tasks” passed along to other professional, doctors can be freed up to devote more time to complex cases and patient interaction.

We currently have a shortage of physicians, which is growing as doctors leave the profession. Our medical schools are unprepared to train many more doctors, and the profession is no longer as desirable as it once was. Far fewer doctors will encourage their children to go into medicine.

The only promise that has proved to be accurate was Nancy Pelosi’s “We’ll have to pass the bill to find out what is in it.”


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