Gordon Uscier: ACA choices

December 7, 2013 

Regarding the Dec. 1 piece “Proper insurance should be a choice”: The writer stated that a market-based system would reduce health care costs. Then why have health costs dramatically increased over the past 20 years?

The new law takes steps to keep insurance premiums low in two ways: First, some may qualify for a subsidy. Using the writer’s example, his business may qualify for a small business health care tax credit. Second, there is now an 80/20 rule requiring insurance companies to rebate any excess premium charged if they spend less than 80 percent of premiums on medical care and efforts to improve the quality of care. Companies rebated about $1.1 billion last year and will rebate an estimated $500 million this year.

Contrary to the writer’s assertion, consumers have insurance choices. We can all purchase policies with different deductibles and co-pays. And some can purchase catastrophic plans.

Finally, states control insurance and tort laws (N.C. reformed medical malpractice laws in 2011). And if we want a more robust and competitive market, then petition the N.C. legislature to take control of the market.

We have choice. What we need is affordable health care for all. And Obamacare is the first step.

Gordon Uscier, Raleigh

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