Monday, August 17, 2009

ASk and you shall receive

The Bonster

My friend Bonnie, "The Bonster" Commented on my last post and one thing is certain, when it comes to this Health Care Reform that President Obama is trying to push, not everyone is on the same page.

Anyway, Bonnie asked me to post her comment on my main page. I'm's here....I always take a dare.

Thing is, I read the comments somewhere else already but I'll get to that later.

Bonnie wrote:
ok tom, there is no big conspiracy here these are lifted word for word out of the proposed healthcare bill that you think is sooo good for us our country etc.

Bonnie says:
page 30 sec 123: there will be government committee that decides what treatments/benefits you get.

Tom's response:

Section 123 establishes a Health Benefits Advisory Committee that makes recommendations on what types of health insurance coverage will be defined as basic, enhanced or premium. The committee will be chaired by the surgeon general, with members appointed by the president, the comptroller general, and representatives of federal agencies. This committee makes recommendations on insurance regulations, so in that sense it does set standards for benefits. But it does not make decisions about treatments for individuals.

Currently an Private Insurance Company, with profits in mind, makes coverage decisions for you Bonnie

Bonnie Reports:

page 42: the heath choices commissioner will choose your health care benefits for you (No choice)

Tom Responds:
Section 142 outlines the duties of the Health Choices commissioner, who is charged with regulating insurers. The commissioner should seek insurers to offer different types of insurance, including basic, enhanced and premium. Individuals will be able to choose among competing insurers who are regulated via the exchange.

Bonnie tells me :
page 50 sec 152 Health care
will be proved to non -US citizens,illegal or otherwise.

Tom Responds:
Section 152 includes a generic nondiscrimination clause, which says insurers may not discriminate with regard to "personal characteristics extraneous to the provision of high quality health care or related services." It says nothing about "non-US citizens" or immigrants, legal or otherwise. In fact, the legislation specifically states that undocumented aliens will not be eligible for credits to help them buy health insurance, in Section 246 on page 143.

Bonnie Writes:
page59 lines 21-24 Goverment will have direct access to your bank accounts for electronic funds transfer

Tom Responds: First with a question, are you talking about the Patriot Act now, cause Bush pushed that one through and can already look at all you banking activitiess?? But with regard to the Health Care Bill:

Section 163 sets out goals for electronic health records. One of the goals is to include features that "enable electronic funds transfers, in order to allow automated reconciliation" between payment and billing. The legislative summary says the intent in the section is "to adopt standards for typical transactions" between insurance companies and health care providers. The legislation generically describes typical electronic banking transactions and does not outline any special access privileges.

Bonnie states:
page 85 line 7 Specifications of benefit levels for plans=the government will ration your health care! page 127
lines 1-16 the government will tell you what salary you can earn.

Tom says: Ration is one of those scary words people are using to frighten people..It isn't used anywhere in the bill, the benefit levels are set in three categories and if you want to pay additional amounts for those enhanced plans you are welcome to, the bill basically says the following......
Section 203 sets rules saying that plans must offer basic plans before they can offer plans with extra benefits. These extra benefits are defined as enhanced plans and premium plans. (The unstated assumption here is that enhanced and premium plans will be more profitable for the insurance companies.) But this isn't the page number that requires health plans to participate in the exchange. Technically speaking, private insurance plans are not required to participate. Rather, only insurance sold on the exchange will satisfy the mandate that people have health insurance. In effect, private health plans that want to sell to individuals will have to sell through the exchange, under the terms of the bill. The current subsidized health care benefits available in Massachusetts are based on the Salary of those applying, certainly if you are applying and exceed those Salary Levels you would not be approved for any subsidy.

Bonnie says:

page 145 line15-17 ; an employer must auto enroll employees into the public option plan. there will be no choice.

Tom replies:
It says that individuals will be automatically enrolled in Medicaid only if they have "not elected to enroll in an Exchange-participating health benefits plan." So the auto-enrollment only happens if they have not chosen another plan.

Bonnie Says:
page 167 lines 18-23; any individual who doesn't have acceptable health care according to the government will be taxed 2.5 percent of income. page 170 lines 1-3; any non-resident alien is exempt from individual taxes. ( AMERICANS WILL PAY ) page 195: Officers/ Employees of the government will have access to ALL Americans finances/ personal records.

Tom Replies as best he can to all those things one at a time:

Section 225:discusses payments for physicians who choose to accept the public option insurance. Again, there may be a broader case to be made that the government can compete with private insurers through the public option, but this section of the plan only applies to payments to doctors for patients who are part of the public option. The government does not set wages for doctors because doctors are free to decline to see the patients.

The 2.5% tax, xouldn't find that number anywhere; however if one does elect a Private Insurer that hasn't met the Standard approved by the government. But again, Private insurance, more than likely the plan you already pay for, will be available through the Health Exchange and should not be TAXABLE!.. Tax is another one of those Scary words!!

Going back ( AMERICANS WILL PAY ) the legislation specifically states that undocumented aliens will not be eligible for credits to help them buy health insurance, in Section 246 on page 143.

Bonnie Says:

page 241 lines 6-8 Doctors , no matter what specialty they have will be paid the same.

Tom Replies...Other than what I said earlier about Physician Payments I couldn't find anything...I hope this means we can pay Dentists less..They are Highway Robbers !!

Bonnie Says:
page 253 line 10-18 Government sets values of doctors time, profession, judgement, etc. Literally the value of humans.

Tom Replies:
Well this sounds like a contradiction to what you said earlier about Physician payments...Doctors time, PROFESSION, and Judgement should be considered.. Especially BAD Judgement but in any case there should be standards for those things.

Well, this is not my typical post but I value my readers and felt that when one of my favorite people asked me to post her comments on my fron page...Well I had to do it!

Thanks for adding to the discussion Bonnie. Certainly there are so many views about this legislation. My feeling is that even though I believe that it is time for health care reform, the major insurers that I mentioned in my earlier post will infiltrate congress and shape the bill more to their liking by buying off our elected officials with campaign promises and what not. The other big impedement to change is fear. So many Americans that are already insured and have voted for or against Obama are scared that the coverage they have now will be taken away from them. I

They have been made scared by Viral emails and Media outlets with agendas of their own. I think the big winners in all this will be the Health Insurers and that is really too bad.

Another huge cost associated with health care is the TORT Reform, eliminating frivolous lawsuits that force doctors to pay outrageous Insurance premiums in order to be able to do their jobs. Again, Insurance Companies don't want the government to address TORT reform while working out the Health Care reform.

Why not? Certainly lowering the costs Doctors pay for insurance would lower the cost of delivering care!!

One last note. My mother, and she's gonna hate being used as an example as she thinks just like you. BUT, My mom just had Brain Surgery recently and a couple days ago she made a Blueberry Pie, She's walkin and Talkin and Baking and guess what ???

Both of her insurance plans are, that's right, from the Government !! So I guess they can do it...


dawtch said...

Isn't it amazing how folks can pick and chose phrase from something and make them appear to say the total opposite of what the ENTIRE passage is saying...

Momzy said...



I like your pic's better. Love you Dad