Let’s Talk About Healthcare: Can We Keep the Affordable Care Act?

Author: Elizabeth Zarb, Current Events/Politics

Everyone seems to be talking about healthcare. And they should be, and you should be, too. This bill will have an effect on millennials, but how?

Let’s break this down… with some help from The New York Times. 

The Affordable Care Act, nicknamed “Obamacare,” was passed in 2010 and allowed more Americans to be covered by health insurance for lower rates, and encouraged all Americans to get health insurance before they got sick. While the act definitely had some flaws, the intention behind it was to make sure that everyone had health care. One of the biggest topics during the election debates was how each candidate planned on improving Obamacare.

Since Obamacare was enacted, a lot of Republicans have wanted it removed, mainly due to the fact that in order to afford Obamacare, richer Americans are being taxed heavier. During the election process, Donald Trump made it clear that he wanted Obamacare repealed. As he transitioned into power, the repeal was one of the first things he set in motion.

The bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act would reduce Medicaid and would allow insurance companies to turn away more people with “preexisting conditions,” which is quite the opposite of what Obamacare is all about. No one should be turned away from healthcare, but evidently that is a difficult concept for people to grasp. 

However, repealing the Affordable Care Act may not be in the best interest for Americans, as it was just revealed that repealing the act would cause 22 million Americans to become uninsured by 2026. Twenty-two. Million. Americans. Oh boy.

Many senators have come forward saying that should the bill to repeal Obamacare reach the Senate, they would vote against it. Senator Rand Paul stated “it’s worse to pass a bad bill than no bill.”

The choice now is to either withdraw the bill so that it can be improved upon, or keep it in so that it will inevitably be destroyed.

This begs the question — what can be done to improve Obamacare? Is it maintainable? Is it broken, or does it not need to be fixed? Does it beat the proposed alternative? Because the current plan seems to be causing more harm than good. It’s up to Trump and his administration to figure out a happy medium, so that Obamacare can be repaired while millions of Americans still get to keep their health insurance.

How will the proposed alternative, if passed, affect millennials? Well, many of us also have pre-existing conditions just like members of other generations. But that’s not the least of it. If millennials don’t purchase health insurance because the cost is just too high, when there is actually a medical problem that requires attention, we won’t be able to pay for treatment. Obamacare required the purchase of health insurance, and as a result, millennial medical debt decreased by 20% since 2010.

If the proposed alternative is passed, that figure has the potential to rise. We’ll be back in debt. We’ll be shopping for poor quality options. And worst of all, we won’t be healthy.


Disclaimer: The political views presented in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of Not Another Millennial Blog.

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