Will the CR Delay ObamaCare?
Rep. Nita Lowey (D-NY) fears it will:
Lowey Statement on 2013 Continuing Resolution
Congresswoman Nita Lowey, Ranking Democrat on the House Appropriations Committee, today delivered the following statement on the House floor regarding the FY2013 Continuing Resolution and Defense and Military Construction/VA Appropriations bills:
Mr. Speaker, the bill before us contains a defense bill and a military construction/Veterans Affairs bill adjusting the FY 2012 funding levels to meet FY 2013 needs. It is unacceptable that federal agencies and departments covered by the 10 remaining bills would be forced to operate under full-year continuing resolutions based on plans and spending levels enacted 15-18 months ago.
Congress’ failure to do our jobs and pass responsible, annual spending bills limits our ability to respond to changing circumstances, implement other laws enacted by Congress, and eliminate funding that is no longer necessary.
Specifically, this bill will delay implementation of the Affordable Care Act, scheduled to begin enrolling participants in October. Without IT infrastructure to process enrollments and payments, verify eligibility and establish call centers, health insurance for millions of Americans could be further delayed.
But wait. The Obama administration says ObamaCare will roll out on schedule. Does Lowey know something?
The Fed: ObamaCare “Leading to Layoffs”
The Hill has the story:
The Federal Reserve on Wednesday released an edition of its so-called “beige book,” that said the 2010 healthcare law is being cited as a reason for layoffs and a slowdown in hiring.
“Employers in several Districts cited the unknown effects of the Affordable Care Act as reasons for planned layoffs and reluctance to hire more staff,” said the March 6 beige book, which examines economic conditions across various Federal Reserve districts across the country.
Or in other words, yes, ObamaCare will eliminate some 800,000 jobs.
Better than Medicaid Expansion: Missouri Senate Approves ‘Good Samaritan’ Law
Never mind Medicaid expansion. The Missouri Senate has approved a bill that would allow doctors to give free medical care to the poor.
You wouldn’t think the government would have to pass a law to let doctors give free health care to the poor. Yet nearly every state prohibits out-of-state physicians and other clinicians from providing free charitable care to the poor unless those clinicians obtain a new medical license from that state.
In a forthcoming paper for the Cato Institute, I explain how medical licensing laws deny care to the poor, and how reforming those laws is a better alternative than Medicaid expansion:
Remote Area Medical has had to turn away patients or scrap clinics in places California, Florida, and Georgia. “Before Georgia told us to stop,” says founder Stan Brock, “we used to go down to southern Georgia and work with the Lions Club there treating patients.” After a tornado devastated Joplin, Missouri, Remote Area Medical arrived with a mobile eyeglass lab, yet state officials prohibited the visiting optometrists from giving away free glasses.
These stories belie the claim that government licensing of medical practitioners protects patients. Instead, they block access to care for the most vulnerable patients.
States should adopt “Good Samaritan” laws, like those enacted in Tennessee, Illinois, and Connecticut. Those states allow out-of-state-licensed clinicians to deliver free charitable care in their states without obtaining a new license. To protect patients, visiting clinicians are and should be subject to the licensing malpractice laws of the state in which they are practicing.
This week, Missouri’s Senate passed such a Good Samaritan law. (It even lets licensed veterinarians come to the state to provide free charitable care to animals.) The bill also provides an inducement to out-of-state clinicians by reducing their liability exposure for malpractice. It would be better if the state were to let doctors and patients choose their own malpractice liability rules via contract. Unlike ObamaCare’s massive Medicaid expansion, this bill would expand access to care for the poor without costing states or taxpayers a dime.
Here’s a video on Remote Area Medical, the good that it does–and the good that licensing laws prevent it from doing.
Even if you’re not ready to concede that medical licensing laws are harmful and should be repealed, you would have to admit it makes no sense for the government to block licensed doctors from treating the poor for free.