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“Millenials” – The PPAVA is for you!

December 19, 2013

This aticle was published in the Duncan OK Banner December 11, 2013.

The Republicans have gone above and beyond with their often-uttered announcements to the public that government is “unable to handle big things”. They trample on the history of this country, although we rose to become an unbeatable industrial giant, fought two world wars, financed the building of intercontinental railroads, electrified rural America, built the Grand Coulee Dam, and completely overhauled the nation’s highways, creating a network of interstate expressways. There is an emptiness in the Republican “memory bank” regarding how popular Social Security and Medicare have become. Past history explains their opposition to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act if we but study their comments when Social Security and Medicare were being discussed and voted upon.
They lost in congress, lost in the courts, lost in a presidential election and, following some 40 plus attempts to defund, denude or repeal all or parts of the PPACA, they lost again. They know what is going to happen on New Years day – the ACA will become unstoppable. Their last and slim hopes to derail the Affordable Care Act lie with the “millennials” (those persons between the ages of 19-34) who have not yet signed up for health insurance.
Again, Republicans are failing to look at history. The Affordable Care Act was based, in large part, on a health care plan adopted by the State of Massachusetts under Republican Governor Romney and supported by the conservative Heritage House. That plan was supported by conservatives until the Democrats in Congress and President Obama supported this plan to final passage.
The difference in Massachusetts’ and today’s Federal rollout times for signing up for health insurance is difficult to compare (enrollee totals by day or month) because that state enrolled for 15 months versus the six months currently allocated for the federal signups. The federal signups during the first month – October – were 106,000. During its first enrollment month, just 132 signed up in Massachusetts. The total number of today’s young people who enrolled in October was not statistically reported. According to PolicyMic (a Web Blog of two Millennials, one Democrat and one Republican), “Among Massachusetts’ young people under 35, enrollment more than doubled in the final month of enrollment, and the uninsured rate among young adults fell by more than 60% during the following year.” Currently, in states that have set up their insurance exchanges, statistics indicate that 20% of the people signing up are 19-34 years old.
The biggest complaint from the “millennials” is that they don’t want to pay higher premiums to cover medical costs of elderly and ill people. They seem to have forgotten who paid for their educations during their first 12 academic years or through college – parents, taxpayers, Pell Grants and student loans funded and insured them. Parents’ tax dollars are funding your children’s schools. Actually, by researching information available to the online, they can become better acquainted with the ACA. With all the bad publicity the Affordable Care Act has received, justly or unjustly, the fact remains that a group of the “millennials” has no idea what the ACA provides, indicating to this writer the need for informed guidance from family, friends, peers and/or counselors.
Republicans tout our present health care system while statistics show the United States’ health care system is inefficient. We rank 46th in healthcare-efficiency-spending, the most spent per person of any other country.
For “millennials” under 30, the ACA offers “catastrophic” bare bones plans. Those catastrophic plans have lower premiums with higher co-pays and deductibles, but they still pay for three primary care visits per year.
An individual living in Oklahoma should check out the plans at healthcare.gov even if it takes some time. People who have taken the time found better insurance for less money than they now pay! No computer? The library will welcome you!

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