Covering the implementation of the Affordable Care Act has been no easy matter and it is a topic that is hard to not draw fire from one side or another. Many Americans are against it, hence the nickname Obamacare. It also has to be said that many Americans are for the health care initiative. This week may have just marked a significant change in President Obama's health care rollout strategy after former President Bill Clinton made comments about the promises of getting to keep your existing plan if you wanted to.
Most readers will remember that the Clinton White House also wanted a form of universal health care insurance. That effort did not pass in the 1990s and it was dubbed as "Hillarycare" because first lady Hillary Clinton was largely in charge of the effort.
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This is not an effort just aimed at referencing names, nor is meant to be disrespectful. Perhaps the biggest secret everyone already knows is that Hillary Clinton wants to run for president in the 2016 election. If Bill Clinton was making public statements about a key shortcoming of Obamacare, it seems easy to assume that over the coming years you could easily see Obamacare become Hillarycare or "anyone else's name-care" very soon.
The Clinton health care plan was called the Health Security Act. Its aim was to require every American to become enrolled in a qualified health plan. It also wanted to have mandatory enrollment until enrollment was successful in another plan. The Clinton plan included minimum coverage levels and included maximum out of pocket expenses each year as well. Sound familiar?
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So what happens if you draw a straight line from now to 2016? Health care is obviously going to be an argument that lasts for years ahead, and maybe even decades. Based upon the very recent Republican members of Congress aiming to defund the Affordable Care Act, what are the odds that fighting health care will be a key initiative again? Close to 99.9% by our guess.
President Obama's change of policy made on Thursday was to try to live up to the promise of anyone being able to keep their current health plans if they want to. The President also said he understands how upsetting this is after the assurances he made in the years up to enrollment. His words indicate that current policies would now not be cancelled in 2014 as long as certain criteria were met.
So, back to the future changing of the guard. Any president in their final term is called a lame duck president. If the Republicans will be running against Obamacare and if Bill and Hillary Clinton wanted their own health care initiative, it requires no crystal ball to expect Hillary Clinton to run with a modified health plan proposal versus the law that just went into effect. Anyone else running under the Democrat party will have some sort of modified plan as well.
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When President Obama spoke on Thursday regarding the changes to the health care, he cited that more than 100,000 have successfully enrolled. He cited that another 396,000 had gained access to Medicaid under the new law, something which has not received much coverage. The President also said that the people who started the enrollment process but have not completed the process showed enough demand that would cover 1.5 million people.
President Obama did say that two things would have to be included in today's address. One is for insurers to inform customers what the plans do not include. The second was that they would have to show what the marketplaces offer. Another statement was made that the new issue would not solve every problem for every person.
If (or when) Hillary Clinton runs ahead of 2016, you will almost certainly hear about plans to alter or improve what is now Obamacare. The old name of Hillarycare will almost certainly be brought back up. Plans under any other candidate will be called by their name with "care" on the end of it.
Again, no disrespect is intended.