Oh, dear, even Time magazine, stalwart of the MSM, is beginning to realize that some of the soothing rhetoric around passage of the healthcare bill was-er-exaggerated. The magazine is now reporting the new legislation will affect our current insurance plans, even if we happen to like them.
The magazine tiptoes into the issue by first noting that critics of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act are estimating that by 2013 between 39 percent and 69 percent of existing employer healthcare plans will have to go (they won’t be grandfathered in or will be subject to new rules that make them in reality different policies). Then the article quotes the headline to a recent press release by House minority leader John Boehner. Boehner says that the tagline to the new system should be, “If You Like Your Health Care Plan, Too Bad.”
Then Time harrumphs:
That partisan rhetoric may be heated, but it’s not entirely off base. The truth is that employer-based plans, which many assumed would easily be categorized as grandfathered, will be subject to the full regulatory thrust of the new law if they are altered in ways that are standard practice in the industry. Plans that increase the percentage of costs patients must pay out of pocket – known as co-insurance – lose their grandfathered status. The same is true for plans that significantly decrease the percentage that employers contribute to premiums or those that significantly increase deductibles or co-payments. An employer that switches health-insurance providers also loses its grandfathered status. These kinds of changes are common year to year in the current marketplace, since employers are constantly looking for ways to limit their expenses in the face of rising costs.
Well, golly, you know what that sounds like to me?
“If You Like Your Health Care Plan, Too Bad.”