I always liked what I heard about ACA; I think affordable healthcare for all is both essential and the moral thing to do.
I never understood why the Obama administration didn’t explain the law better, or at all. We heard 2 or 3 talking points and that was it. The public was never told ‘what’s in it for me.’ That baffled me because if this law was as good as they were saying I would have thought they would have been singing its praises.
I can tell you from first hand experience that it’s not just the website which had a disastrous rollout; it’s the entire law. Since I will be starting a business soon I have done a lot of research about ACA, which doctors will accept it, what kind of plans I could get. What I have found out has been maddening and extremely disappointing. I can’t speak for any other state besides New York, but let me tell you what I found out. First I talked with my dentist of 13 years, she told me that they had not decided which of the exchanges they would accept. She said that the information given to doctors was just as opaque as what was given to the public. She recommended not having dental coverage and just paying out of pocket; it would probably be cheaper.
Next I spoke with my dermatologist of 10 years. She also told me that she had very little knowledge of ACA and what plan she would accept. She also told me that her practice is also a small business and didn’t know what she was going to do about her own, and her staffs’ health insurance. She was concerned about what she was going to do. Her recommendation to me? Don’t choose a plan that she would accept; I should just come for my yearly check up and pay out of pocket for it.
Last week I saw my primary care doctor of over 20 years; before I saw him the woman in charge of billing told me the practice would be accepting none of the exchanges in ACA. When I spoke to the doctor I asked him about it and he was furious. He told me that it wasn’t his decision not to accept any of the exchanges; it’s that the exchanges would not accept any doctors who are affiliated with teaching hospitals or universities. Any reputable doctor is affiliated with teaching hospitals. He said that once you take that layer of doctors away what is left is subpar doctors. He also said that ACA was trying to push everyone into Medicaid; this would be a disaster because the doctors that accept Medicaid are definitely doctors to stay away from. They are amongst the worst in talent and treatment. My doctor also told me that in ACA you are covered for emergency room visits. But it might only be the ER on Coney Island (50 miles away). He recommended getting catastrophic insurance and pay out of pocket for regular visits.
These are my choices? This is supposed to help people? This is how you insure people who own small businesses? Three of my doctors, that are highly respected and at the top of their fields, recommend no insurance? My PC doc predicts an implosion in the coming months. Healthcare for all, but not any of the good doctors? Bad healthcare isn’t good for anyone, whether you have insurance or don’t.
This plan is unacceptable for anyone who lives in New York. It is a disgrace and needs to be immediately changed.