By Gregg A. Masters, MPH
It is past time to stand for clarity in the consideration process of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act aka ‘the Act.’
Even this far down the line, the benefits of the Act remain elusive to many both in and outside of the Beltway and the very limited attention span of the American public – from Joe Sixpack to so-called elites who spent some time in ‘kollege.’
Thanks to one of the more disciplined and articulate health wonks in the space let me draw your attention to ‘11 Facts About the Affordable Care Act‘ by @EzraKlein.
As an uninsured self employed boomer with 3 plus decades in the belly of the beast, I am particularly interested in the narrative behind this graphic:
I find it amusing and somewhat troubling that my access to quality, affordable healthcare fate rests to a large degree in the hands of 9 insured Federal jurists [employees with lifetime appointments] perhaps mindful of the sentiment of a largely misinformed public, too often cheered on by special interests, who see their business model(s) at risk. Not to mention the claims by some that the enumerated list is NOT ‘factual’, even though the data-points are reported by credible sources with standing in the discourse in the public domain. Yet, one of the comments objected to the use of projections built upon decades of both public accounting and budget forecasting practice was challenged as ‘facts’, i.e., the project savings and costs of various initiatives, etc.
Beagle17:02 AM PDT
I’d hardly call estimates of what may happen in the future “facts”. More like wishful thinking. In that category, I’d put s 1, 9 &11. Remember that Medicare was supposed to be a bargain, and in the ensuing years its costs have ballooned beyond anyone’s wildest expectations. That prognosticators predcit the ACA to be any different astounds me
This argument merely underscores the opportunities for obfuscation if not diversion from the central conversation which is that lives are at stake.
None-the-less, it is imperative for the ‘skin in the game’ public and I am not limiting this pool to the uninsured or under-insured demographic sectors, e-patients and health activists, but all of us to get what this Act has already done, or positions via staged incremental progress (see the ‘What We’re Doing‘ series of initiatives led by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation, aka @cmsinnovates, not to mention the litany of private commercial market initiative witness @Aetna, @UHG, et al) into the future of a sustainable financing and delivery platform.
What was the message from Star Wars in ‘How Liberty Dies scene?’ Answer:
with thunderous applause…
usually via the ‘don’t confuse me with facts, my mind is already made up’ crowd.