Archived Story

Affordable Care Act is a necessary law

Published 10:06am Wednesday, September 11, 2013 Updated 12:06pm Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Kirby Ronsley Greene and Gene Keller (Aug 29, 2013) express their displeasure regarding the Affordable Care Act (ACA) which they label Obamacare even though the act that was passed is not identical with the President’s original proposal but a modified act which a majority in both houses of Congress were willing to approve.

Today, 32 Million Americans are living without healthcare coverage.  For some it is by choice, but the vast majority are without coverage simply because they do not have the money needed to pay the premiums demanded.

I know that for profit insurance companies are not the answer from personal experience even if you have the money to pay the premiums. Their main objective is to make a profit, not care for individuals.

I am now 89 years old, diagnosed with Congestive Heart Failure, living in an Assisted Living Facility for more than two years.  Years back, my late wife and I purchased a Long Term Care Policy to cover possible nursing home or assisted living needs. The salesman called it “Golden Care” and sang high praises.

The insurer we purchased it from sold the policy to another company and that company later sold it to sill  another.

We paid our premiums faithfully for years  Cancer claimed my wife before she needed policy benefits.  In March 2011, my health had declined to the point that I had to enter an assisted living facility.

I immediately applied for benefits under my policy.  My application was rejected in due course by the current owner of my policy.

All agreed I needed assistance to the degree that current Minnesota Law allows insurance companies to demand to trigger benefits.  But my policy was purchased before that law was passed by the state legislature.

I then discovered the policy was written in such a way as to make it extremely difficult to qualify for benefits.

Finally, in May 2013, after a hospital stay, I was finally judged sufficiently in need of Assisted Living Care for the company to start counting down the elimination period to begin payment of benefits under the policy.

Mine is not an isolated case.  Minnesota would never have passed that law limiting the demands insurance companies could make on Long Term Care policies if they had not been widespread abuse earlier. For profit agencies will always, necessarily, put top priority on remaining profitable.

Our U.S.A. learned years back that Senior citizens could not rely on for profit insurers for medical coverage.  That is why we have Medicare.

The Affordable Care Act was designed to fill the gap that Medicare left in our national healthcare coverage.  So it is not a perfect solution.

My recommendation is:  Improve it — do not rescind it.

 

Arthur J. L. Meether,

Fergus Falls

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