Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Section 133 of the GOP Replacement - Continuous Coverage

Corporate, Free Market, For Profit Doctoring:
The Republican "Replacement" Bill
It's only a draft, but you can already smell it.

MeanMesa very determinedly began threading through the GOOGLE to locate the actual legislative version of the Republican bill. It, apparently, is currently only a "draft" of the thing which is intended to "spell out" a few of the many agonizing details Republicans plan to pack into the final monstrosity.

No doubt reflecting on the months long mayhem which ensued while the ACA was initially being debated, the very crafty Republicans in the House decided that their version was to be locked away from prying eyes -- and the inevitable criticism by those whose ox had been gored first. Naturally, this move righteously infuriated their fellow, "freedom and government transparency loving" GOP peers into predictable episodes of conveniently video-taped, media outrage.

Then, amid all these theatrical insults, bruises and other outrages, the House GOP quite dramatically "released the Kraken," loudly advertising the fact that the thing was now very patriotically available for the public to read.

However, what's available for citizen perusal is, indeed, remaining "plenty drafty." Nonetheless, the sketch is organized into numbered sections, and MeanMesa would like to select one of those numbered sections for a little closer look. [You can read the entire Congressional draft for yourself.]

It is a painful example of just how deeply the Koch brothers' "free market fascism" has penetrated into this awkwardly cruel proposal.

Everybody Hates the ACA's Uninsured Penalty Provision, Right?
What could be more odious than being forced
 to pay the government a penalty if you don't get insured?
Paying the "newly rewarded" health insurance corporations
 an usually even larger penalty is much less painful.

Not to worry. Your "freedom and fairness loving" Republican Congressmen have ripped this awful part of the equation right out of the new plan. "How have they done such a wonderful thing?" you might ask.

By eliminating the "middle man," of course! Here's the scheme the Republicans have devised. It is far to complicated to have any particular political effect on the generally uninformed Trump supporters, so...everybody wins, right? The poor "number crunching" denizens toiling in the billionaire think tanks must have had to work over time to think up this stinky little jewel.

Comparing - Who gets the "penalty?" [MeanMesa]
Subtitle D: Patient Relief and Health Insurance Market Stability 

Section 133 Continuous Health Insurance Coverage Incentive 

The continuous coverage incentive is designed to limit adverse selection in health care markets. Beginning in open enrollment for benefit year 2019, there will be a 12-month lookback period to determine if the applicant went longer than 63 days without continuous health insurance coverage. If the applicant had a lapse in coverage for greater than 63 days, issuers will assess a flat 30 percent late-enrollment surcharge on top of their base premium based on their decision to forgo coverage. This late-enrollment surcharge would be the same for all market entrants, regardless of health status, and discontinued after 12 months, incentivizing enrollees to remain covered. This process would being for special enrollment period applicants in benefit year 2018.

GOP Turning a Hand to Earn Those Big
 "Campaign Contribution" Checks
It's hardly a "hand to mouth" Congress.

[The median net worth of a member of Congress was $1,029,505 in 2013 — a 2.5 percent increase from 2012 — compared with an average American household's median net worth of $56,355. Once again, the majority of members of Congress are millionaires — 271 of the 533 members currently in office, or 50.8 percent. Jan 12, 2015. GOOGLE]

The ACA did all manner of hurtful things to the health insurance corporations. These monoliths were suddenly faced with the horrible requirement of actually spending 85% of their revenue from premiums on actual health care. For example, although the "pre-existing condition" rate schedules had been an astounding corporate money maker for them prior to the ACA's enactment, they suddenly had to insure sick people at some sort of rate which was affordable.

Even worse, Federal subsidies were being granted to mere citizens -- folks who had never "gathered for a friendly afternoon cocktail" behind the guarded gates of the billionaire country clubs. 

Well, the "1%-ers" had complained to their GOP Congressional toadies on a daily basis about these costly outrages. An entire media network [FOX] had been hired to demonize the ACA with every breath exhaled by a broadcasting ninny year after year, and every dirty shirt Republican Congressman lamented about the hideous unfairness of the thing every time he got close to a microphone.

The think tank boys told these politicians to always use the phrase "failed system," and they very dutifully obeyed.

Now, it's clearly "get even" time, and an obedient Congress is ready to sign off on anything. A rageful, addled President will, no doubt, also be waiting with his pen.

Additional Reading

Although thousands of articles about this are flooding the Internet, here are a couple which caught MeanMesa's attention.

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