Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Rep. Ellmers in Her Own Words

Rep. Renee Ellmers, a nurse who was elected in November to represent the 2nd District of North Carolina is here speaking about problems with the ACA. She ran her campaign at least partly in opposition to 'ObamaCare' but also talked of a replace bill. Repeal and replace. I would like to give her the benefit of the doubt, but I still don't hear what she is for. And some of her comments directly contradict one another. For example:
  • Medicaid expansions are too expensive for states
  • Doctors cannot afford to treat Medicaid beneficiaries because the payment rates are too low
The reason the ACA depends heavily on Medicaid expansions (about half of the 32 Million persons who would be covered in 2020 who would be uninsured without the ACA will have Medicaid) is that it is the cheapest way to expand coverage. It is cheaper than doing so through private health insurance precisely because Medicaid pays lower rates to providers. We could easily just raise Medicaid rates to providers, it would just cost more. These two specific problems she notes work in direct opposition to one another.

I have suggested a route to a compromise. Maybe it is still too grand for Rep. Ellmers. Fine. It is very easy to say what you are against, but much harder to come up with something better.

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