The Tipping Point on Health Care Reform

Those who wish to see President Obama re-elected should be very worried because of what may unfold as a result of the health care reform passed last month.  There seems to be general agreement that the addition of 30 million new insureds to the “rolls” will put great pressure on the health care system.  This could well cause “rationing” where non-emergency care is deferred until space and physicians are available.  This impact will unfold (if it does) in 2011 and more clearly in 2012 – the election year.  If this “squeeze” comes about then those running against the President both in the Democratic party and the Republican will point to these delays as “not what we were promised” when health care passed.  If this occurs where the patient is told the earliest date upon which the procedure can be performed as opposed to allowing the patient to schedule the event when convenient to the patient (the norm today) there will be a “hue and cry” that people are being “denied care” as a result of health care reform.  The other problem with the reform is that the “penalty” for not buying insurance is a small tax penalty.  This means the younger, healthy people who are needed in the insurance pool if premiums are going be stable or fall will not get insurance.  This means premiums are lilely to rise.

Think about it:  In 2012 the data will be in.  If waiting months for treatment becomes the norm and insurance premiums have gone up, well….the average independent voter will not support the incumbents.

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