Opinion

Clearing Up Falsehoods on the Nominees' Health Care Plans

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Posted: Oct 24, 2020 12:01 AM
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Clearing Up Falsehoods on the Nominees' Health Care Plans

Source: AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli

Every time I hear Joe Biden, Kamala Harris or any other Democrat attacking President Trump over pre-existing conditions for insurance coverage, the anger that’s been simmering begins to boil over. Everyone knows politicians lie, but the danger is that lots of Americans might not realize the depth of this Democrat deception.

One week after Election Day, the Supreme Court – possibly with a full complement of nine justices – will hear California vs. Texas, a case that asks whether the Affordable Care Act can remain standing since the individual insurance mandate was invalidated in 2017. 

President Trump and 18 state attorneys general brought the case in June, hoping the Supreme Court would repeal the massive health care bill passed in 2010 that’s better known as Obamacare. Since then, Democrats have seized on every opportunity – presidential and vice presidential debates, town halls, Senate Judiciary Committee hearings and televised political ads - to claim millions of Americans would lose coverage if Obamacare is relegated to the scrap heap of bad policy. 

Their insistence that any plan the Republicans devise would eliminate protections for those with pre-existing conditions also has become a mantra for the Dems. But there is no truth to it. None.

Obamacare made it illegal for insurance companies to deny people coverage for illnesses or chronic conditions for which they had been treated in the past. And while it’s true the Republicans don’t have a definite plan yet to replace Obamacare, the president has said pre-existing conditions will be protected in any new legislation Congress sends his way, or else he won’t sign it. He says this at all his campaign rallies. He said it during his debate with Biden. He even signed an executive order on it. 

President Trump is a man who is good to his word so when he says pre-existing conditions will be protected under any new healthcare plan, that’s what he means. I believe him and so should you.

Last month in Charlotte, N.C., the president unveiled his America First Health Care Plan that also would lower prescription costs, expand access to telehealth services and health saving accounts, and end surprise medical billing, those nasty bills that arrive by mail with no warning.

If you’re not familiar with surprise medical billing, you’re lucky. But here’s what happened to a friend of mine who was admitted to the hospital in excruciating pain because of herniated discs in his spine. On the second morning of his stay, a doctor stood in the doorway and asked him where his pain was on a scale of 1 to 10. The patient said it was tolerable, mostly because of the pain meds.

My friend never saw that doctor again, but a few weeks later he got a bill for $271 for that speedy check-in because that particular orthopedic specialist was out of his insurance network.

That, in a nutshell, is surprise medical billing. In some states, up to 30 percent of hospital visits are followed up with unanticipated charges that can be hundreds or even thousands of dollars that have to be paid out of pocket. The president’s healthcare plan would eliminate these bills.

Other features to like in the America First Health Care Plan include a commitment to allowing patients to control their own medical records; a requirement that hospitals publish easy-to-understand lists of their prices for 300 common services, and a pledge to improve care for the nation’s veterans.

What does Biden plan to do about healthcare, if the unthinkable happens and he wins the election?

Biden says his plan would build on Obamacare by expanding a public option. Make no mistake, that’s the first step toward socialized medicine. A government plan would be created to compete against – and ultimately eclipse - private plans. Taxpayers, of course, would pick up the tab.

The Heritage Foundation’s Richard Moffitt wrote that the public option would “set in motion dynamics to crowd out health plans in the nation's individual markets and encourage employers to dump millions of workers and their families out of their existing job-based health coverage. It's not about expanding coverage; it is about expanding federal control.” 

If you want example of how government control can spell tragedy, consider the cases of two British boys, Charlie Gard and Alfie Evans, whose national healthcare system decided both of them should die because their treatment was deemed futile. Charlie was a week shy of his first birthday when he died; Alfie was 23 months.

Biden’s healthcare plan also would be a catastrophe for the nation’s most vulnerable citizens, the unborn. He wants to remove all existing state limits on abortion; do away with the Hyde Amendment and force taxpayers to foot the bill for abortion, and restore funding for Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers. Everything the pro-life movement has been able to accomplish since Trump’s inauguration would be wiped out.

The healthcare debate is about much more than what kind of insurance coverage we have and how we pay for it. President Trump’s healthcare plan, as its name clearly states, puts Americans and their needs first, ahead of profit-driven pharmaceutical companies and hospital systems.

Biden’s plan is just one part of a wish list of progressive steppingstones ultimately leading to the demise of our democracy. These are points every voter should understand before casting their ballot this year.

Janet Morana is on the board of Pro-Life Voices for Trump and Catholics for Trump.