The Truth About Federal Public Plan Health Care

To The Reader’s Forum:

For the good of our country all Americans should have good healthcare. A healthy society is a productive society. But healthcare is expensive. Most Americans need insurance. Under the current U.S. healthcare system there is a gap in health insurance coverage. Only certain Americans qualify for government run programs like Medicare, Children’s Health Insurance Program (C.H.I.P.) and Medicaid. This leaves working age adults with moderate incomes struggling to pay high private insurance premiums, accepting inadequate coverage because the premium is lower or having no insurance.

Healthcare is a hot topic in politics today. Medicare for All is attracting most of the attention but the thought of a healthcare system run entirely by the government worries many Americans as it implies high taxes and no freedom to choose your insurance plan or healthcare provider.

A Federal Public Plan Option might be more acceptable. This is a federally run nonprofit insurance plan available to those in the “gap”. Because enrollees pay premiums the plan could be basically self supporting thus avoiding high taxes. The plan is optional. One can still have private insurance.The Public Plan is nonprofit so the.premiums would be reasonably priced. Even if you choose private insurance the competition from the Public Plan would result in lower preminums overall.

There are several Federal Public Plan Options being proposed, including the Keep Health Insurance Affordable Act, Medicare X C.H.O.I.C.E. Act and Choose Medicare Act. These proposals adhere to the basic concept of a Public Plan option but may differ in eligibility requirements (e.g. available only to individuals and businesses); benefits, although all would offer the essential benefits outlined by the Affordable Care Act; financing (e.g. entirely self supporting or partial government funding); and provider payment rate (e.g.Medicare/Medicaid rates or rates determined by the Public Plan).

The Affordable Care Act was a significant step toward good affordable healthcare for many Americans. Maybe a Federal Public Plan Option would take us a step further and provide good affordable healthcare for all Americans.

Christine Nelson-Scherman,

Conewango Valley

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