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johnny0313x's avatar

The health bill, talked about to death but I still don't understand...

Asked by johnny0313x (1855points) March 22nd, 2010

Forgive my ignorance but I have no knowledge of politics and most government terminology. I realize this is probably a bad thing but never had much interest in getting to involved with it. I keep hearing about this health bill and some people are doing back flips with excitement and others…well sound like they want to kill obama. I tried looking up some information on Fluther and on the internet about this but to be honest some of the fancy words and lingo are making it really hard for me to understand this. What is the good and bad about this in simple terms? My take on it is that EVERYONE will be required to have health care and if you don’t you will be fined. Problem is that if you don’t have much money and can’t afford the health care you will be hit pretty hard by these fines(or taxes?)

Now that is really all I got out of it but something tells me I am wrong or don’t know the full story. Could anyone break this down for me as if you were telling a 5th grader lol. Kind of embarrassing to say but It sounds like this is a pretty important thing happening right now and I think I should at least try and understand what is going on.

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19 Answers

missingbite's avatar

You pretty much said the major issues. All Americans must purchase insurance. Taxes go up for the rich to help give the poor a tax break so they can afford it. No lifetime cap. No preexisting conditions will exclude you. About 500 million in medicaid cuts. Most of it goes into effect in 3 to 4 years but we start paying when it gets signed into law. About 30 million new patients with no new doctors or nurses.

jaytkay's avatar

There is a thread here which has surprisingly not gone toxic, with some links simply explaining how the bill as written will work.

johnny0313x's avatar

@missingbite yeah those were my first thoughts about new patients and not enough new doctors.

What do you mean by 500 million medicaid cuts….what is medicaid?

Personally I am happy this is being passed because I think it is important BUT it really is going to put some people in bad situations. However there are people in bad situations right now that are sick and can’t get the help they need. So really it’s just a trade off. healthy people that rarely need medical attention but don’t have any money may hurt from this. Sick people that need medical attention and were never able to get it will be helped in the long run. Frankly I see it as an overall non selfish take on things. I think most people fear something like this because of population increase, waiting longer for medical help and increased costs. Perhaps even OTC companies will lose money on this. However I think it’s looking at life in a more equal stand point. With all good comes bad, just a matter of balancing it out.

missingbite's avatar

Medicaid is a federal program of health insurance for those that can’t afford it. It is a government run program that is broke and needs an overhaul. Part of this new bill is trying to fix it but I have doubts.

gemiwing's avatar

Don’t worry if it takes a while to get a grip on the bill. It’s not going into effect any time soon.

susanc's avatar

Always nice to see someone admitting he doesn’t know something, working on learning it.

And none of us are perfectly clear on this. Not all of it is definite.

snowberry's avatar

My daughter is in an economics class, and this is the way her econ teacher put it: (In short) it will hurt the people who already have great health care in one way or another, and will anger those who don’t want it (yes, there are those who for various reasons don’t WANT health care). Then there are those who’ve never had a chance to have health care, and they are thrilled to have any.

charliecompany34's avatar

i think this is a great question because i wondered the same fricking thing. what the hell is all the hub-bub about this damn bill?

all i know is my wife and i both work and so does the oldest son. we have notes, mortgages, bills unexpected occureences and we, sorry to say this: fucking cope! one of my sons just got out of surgery today while the plumbers work on a drainage problem in my kitchen and i cannot get wound up in something like health care today or years from now.

just live day to day. it cant be all that bad. hell, people raising all the cane about this bill could suudenly die and not have to worry about it at all. just live, man. just live…

thank God and just live…

Parrappa's avatar

@charliecompany34, or while you’re “just living” you could get into a serious car accident, have to pay heaps of hospital bills, and be forced to miss work for weeks. Unless I misread your post, I think it’s extremely ignorant to disregard this new bill just because you don’t need it.

missingbite's avatar

@Parrappa If you can’t afford it medicaid will take care of you even today before the bill is signed into law. If you can afford it and choose not to have it, that is your fault.

I’m using “you” as a general term and do not mean you.

Shae's avatar

@missingbite That is pretty ignorant. Do you think the thousands of people who have died from not being able to afford the health care they needed did it just b/c they were too dumb to check into Medicaid?

missingbite's avatar

@Shae Did you even read my post? And you call me ignorant? I said if you can afford health care and don’t buy it it’s your fault. If you can’t afford it, there is medicaid if you get hurt and have to see a doctor.

Shae's avatar

Yes I read your answer and you are still wrong. You seem to be under the false idea that people who can not afford insurance are somehow protected by Medicaid. That is wrong. There are many many many people who can not afford insurance and are not covered by medicaid.

missingbite's avatar

If you have a problem like the serious car accident that was talked about in the post above, you will be brought to a hospital and get care. It won’t matter if you are covered by medicaid or not. Some people are not covered under medicaid but if you get sick and go to a hospital you will get care. Will they give you long term care, no. But they will save your life if they can.

I am not saying the system we have is perfect but I can assure you the bill we passed last night is not either. It is far from it.

My post, which was a reply to @Parrappa was short and left for a lot of interpretation. For that I am sorry. My main point was that nobody involved in a car accident will be declined help because of lack of insurance. Also that if you can afford insurance and don’t purchase it, I feel you should be on you own.

johnny0313x's avatar

hm, I think that some people can afford insurance but can’t at the same time. Myself being one of them actually. I make an alright amount of money for my age, more then most of my friends and in theory I should be able to afford health insurance(actually in theory my job should do something about this but don’t get me going) However with 900 a month student loan payments and rent/car/gas/food…things suddenly are not as affordable. Now common sense would say…isn’ t your health more important then food and gas etc. Absolutely! However without a car and gas I can’ t get to work and without work I don’t have a place to live. So suddenly you compromise something that should be most important. The student loans I would love to put on the back burner to my health but if I did I would only be ruining my future by not paying them. ANYWAYS point being…I think people who do not have insurance are put into situations that make it hard for them to have it. Anyone who is loaded and is just to lazy to get insurance…well that is another story…

Disc2021's avatar

I’m going to try to respond as indifferently as possible and really just voice the two sides of debate: The reason people want to “kill” Obama/the main political/social/ethical question with it is that it threatens fundamentals our country was founded on and a lot of (I hesitate to say most of) Americans view this as a step towards “Socialism”. America is a free market economy and a free country – but our country’s current health care system is leaving many people uninsured/uncompensated/not accommodated and dissatisfied. So, the government is stepping in and saying “OKAY, here is our health care and you MUST buy it (or get insured by private companies) and we’ll increase taxes on the rich to reduce costs”. This is freaking people out because the main big identifying quality of socialism/communism is the government taking the income of everyone and evenly distributing it amongst the populace. They’re afraid of the slippery slope.

The health care system NEEDS a resolution and where the government steps in and intervenes is a very tricky, controversial line. Many believe that with this bill being passed, the government has crossed that line. On the flip-side – many people believe that the reality of it is, our current system is allowing heath system is allowing the big health care companies to monopolize the market and get away with charging us $50—$60 dollars for a drug that only costs $2—$3 (mind you, while they drive away in their Ferrari’s and Jaguars, the bodies of people who couldn’t afford health care to cover their diseases are driven to the morgue in a hearse) and thus aren’t afraid of the word “Socialism” or “Change” if it means cutting costs, reducing the deficit our country is infamous for and keeping everyone insured.

Government intervention always creates a stir – same with government regulation on wall street, the “bail-out”, abortion, etc. The difference here is that this is actual written into legislature.

charliecompany34's avatar

@Parrappa no. my point is that reform has always been radical in the past, but over time it pans out and works. futuristic visions always seem crazy and haphazard. and then people freak out because they worry about “what could happen or what would happen.”

your grounding is either “world system” or “spiritual.” the latter is prepared for whatever and the latter just copes and survives no matter what.

philosopher's avatar

Bills are written in legalize. They intend to make everyone who is not a lawyers have to read it very carefully; and hope we do not have time.
I admit I do not have time.
In my younger days I would have read it but these days I take care of my Autistic Son.
I wish someone could translate into plain English.
It is hard to admit I feel like this too; because throughout school and college I was the one to explain everything.
This bill is suppose help my Son but how is very unclear.

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