Since the rollout of the Federal Health Insurance Exchange, failed technology, glitches and uncertainty have plagued the Obama administration. In Congress, both sides of the aisle are engaging in political theatrics around the Affordable Care Act. Currently the administration has authorized 19 delays, amendments and repeals to the law. There are a number of state and congressional measures moving forward right now that would have wide-reaching ramifications in the marketplace. First, delaying or repealing the individual mandate, which is a key piece to funding the new coverage mandates put in the law. Without it, insurance costs will skyrocket in the small employer and individual market. Second, there is also an attempt to repeal risk corridors (Insurance Bailouts), which would also directly result in increased costs to consumers.
Politicians in our own backyard are also attempting to drive up health insurance costs. In Colorado, the legislature passed HB14-1108, which creates additional mandated health benefits beyond those already required by the ACA. This legislation is now waiting on action from the Governor.
The problem with these proposals is that none of these do anything to control or reduce health care costs. We need to have a dose of reality injected into this conversation. Regardless of where one stands on the law, there is no going back to pre-ACA. Businesses and individuals are already accountable to its provisions. We need meaningful reforms, brought together with bipartisan effort and stakeholder input to replace the existing law. Should the private insurance markets fail, the inevitable conclusion is socialized medicine.