Monday, August 10, 2009

ObamaCare for Seniors: Sorry, You're Just Not Worth It
Posted By Bobby Eberle On July 29, 2009 at 7:32 am

The debate over Barack Obama's health care plan continues. Senators are trying to cut deals and members of the House of Representatives are doing the same. Democrats are trying to push through a massive government plan that will cost Americans billions and billions of dollars all because Obama wants to take power away from the people and put it in the hands of government.

Throughout this debate, the voices of seniors have been strangely and disturbingly silent. Do they not know the details of ObamaCare? Are they so enamored with this "nice, young man" that they don't even look at what the plan has to offer? ObamaCare has a strong message for seniors, and it is one they shouldn't ignore: If you are old in America, then don't get sick... you're not worth the cost.

In a recent update by The Heritage Foundation, seniors can read for themselves some of the results of ObamaCare on their daily lives.

First, seniors would face an increasing risk of losing their doctor. With cuts to Medicare reimbursements, more and more physicians are no longer taking Medicare patients. ObamaCare makes it worse: "Obama plans to pay for up to a third of his plan by cutting $313 billion in Medicare reimbursements to health care providers over the next 10 years. This will only force more doctors to stop seeing Medicare patients."

Obama's plan also places a disincentive on people to become physicians as his "public" option "could decrease the annual net income of hospitals by $36 billion, while the annual net income of physicians could drop by $33.1 billion."

Then there is the worry that seniors will lose their coverage. As noted in The Heritage Foundation's report, "22% of all Medicare patients, which translates to 10.5 million seniors, are currently enrolled in Medicare Advantage plans. These health plans cover all of the traditional Medicare benefits and much more, including coor­dinated care and care-management programs for enrollees with chronic conditions as well as additional hospitalization and skilled nursing facility stays. President Obama has proposed killing this program entirely."

And, of course, there is the issue that Obama and the liberal Democrats want seniors and all Americans to ignore: the rationing of health care. Under Obama's plan, there will be a new government bureaucracy known as a "federal health board." The purpose of this board is to determine whether various procedures and tests are deemed necessary in the eyes of the federal government. That notion is truly scary.

Obama supporter and infanticide advocate Peter Singer made the case for rationing health care recently in the New York Times, writing: "The task of health care bureaucrats is then to get the best value for the resources they have been allocated." Conservatives in Congress have given Obamacare supporters every opportunity to disavow government-rationed health care, but Obamacare supporters have voted down every anti-rationing amendment proposed. Make no mistake, Obama plans to pay for expanded coverage for the young and healthy by denying treatments to the old and sick.

As noted in a story by the Associated Press, a group of senators is actually working to squeeze more money out of Medicare. "Under the plan, an independent commission would be empowered to recommend changes in Medicare annually, to take effect automatically unless Congress enacted an alternative."

As noted in a new Rasmussen Reports poll, only 23% of Americans believe that health care costs will go down under ObamaCare.

Most Americans are happy with their coverage. Most have coverage. Yet in order to cover the ten percent or so of Americans who don't have it and are having trouble getting it, he wants to impose a new government plan on the other 90% of the country. This is just crazy. ObamaCare is bad news for seniors and bad news for the entire population.


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