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I wonder if the health insurance reform bills that Congress are considering will truely result in health care reform. The goal should be better health care at an affordable price, but I am skeptical that any of the reform bills will achieve that goal.
I also wonder if the federal government has the authority under the U.S. Constitution to mandate health insurance. I understand states requiring auto insurance since a person has the option to own a vehicle. A person does not have the option not to live with regard to mandatory health insurance. How can the federal government know what is best for each citizen and family when there are so many different household situations that cannot entirely be reduced to numbers?
My situation is a single-person household, recently unemployed at age 60, and in danger of not obtaining the American dream at retirement age. My previous employer paid full health, dental, vision, and prescription coverage that cost the employer between $1,000 and $1,100 per month per employee, with $35 monthly contribution per employee. I could continue that coverage at 35% of the premium for up to 9 months, courtesy of American Recovery and Reinvestment Act provisions. I have a home mortgage and car payment. As I see it without income, I would need to choose between continued mortage and car payments versus mandatory health insurance coverage payments with potential penalties. I could sell my house or car, but I cannot sell my life. I would immediately choose to have a roof over my head and transportation, especially since I live in a rural community.
I would prefer national health care coverage funded from personal and corporate taxation than mandatory health insurance coverage where the cost comes out of pocket, especially when many Americans' pockets are almost empty and the unemployment picture is grim into the forseeable future. The advantage would be more emphasis on preventive care and less insurance administrative costs. Anyone who could afford and wanted more coverage than the national plan could pay for it.
posted 3 years, 7 months ago
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