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Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Good News From Obamacare

RJ Matson
By RJ Matson
While Republicans are busy passing discriminatory voter I.D. laws that turn away low-income and minority Americans, Obamacare is drastically cutting the uninsured rate among African-Americans,  Hispanics and low-income Americans. I guess when you spend your time trying to help those who need it, you start to see results.

According to a new Gallup Poll, the uninsured rate amongst African-Americans fell a whopping 6.2 percent, from 20.9 percent the end of 2013 to 14.7 percent by May 31st of this year. When it comes to the Hispanic population, the insured rate fell 5.6 percent, from a staggering 38.7 percent in 2013 to 33.1 percent by May 31st. Still high number, but sharply improving as more Americans continue to enroll through the Affordable Care Act. 

Nationally, the insured rate remains at 13.4 percent, dropping from 17.2 percent in just five months. Meanwhile, Republicans are confused that their years of “Obamacare will cause mass insured rates” rhetoric is falling apart. It should also be noted that the uninsured rate for households earning less than $36,000 a year fell 6 percent, from 30.7 percent to 24.7 percent. 
It looks as though the youth (18-25 years) uninsured rate fell 4.4 percent. It seems to be that everywhere the uninsured rate is falling. Not one group, from age to ethnicity, saw the uninsured rate rise. Again, Republicans, I’m still waiting for your Obamacare doomsday scenario to pan out. But it’s OK, we liberals are pretty patient.

The national rate of uninsured Americans has reached its lowest point since mid-2008, right around the time that the economy tanked. The recent figures on healthcare go to show a slowly but surely recovering economy, even amid 55+ repeal  attempts by the GOP.

African-Americans, Hispanics, low-income Americans and the youth were all specific targets of President Obama’s  healthcare overhaul. And guess what? He reached them, helping millions of underrepresented Americans achieve their right to have quality, affordable healthcare. However, the GOP has made it very clear with their failed outreach program that blacks and Hispanics aren’t people in their eyes, so they’ll probably dismiss the information.

Actually it all makes sense now why the uninsured rate is falling: those damn death panels are killing off the uninsured!

However I wonder how much better those statistics would look if it wasn’t for GOP obstruction in states like Texas and Florida where, combined, almost 2 million uninsured Americans are starving to receive health insurance – some for the first time. 

Also because of GOP obstruction of healthcare, thousands of veterans are blocked or stalled in receiving  adequate healthcare coverage and other health-related benefits. And what a shocker… now we face a VA scandal. And a scandal it is, although it’s not what the GOP would have you think.
  • I’m still waiting for premiums to skyrocket 99 percent.
  • I’m still waiting for the uninsured rate to double.
  • I’m still waiting for doctors to leave the U.S.
  • In the past three months, we’ve seen almost 9 million Americans enroll through, and now the insured rate has dropped literally across the board.
Bottom line, this is how you build a healthier more stable nation. This is how civilized, advanced societies act. They don’t let Americans go uninsured to save doctors just a little more in their already over-grossed paychecks. 

Doesn’t it make more sense to know that as the uninsured rate drops, more people can utilize doctors’ offices? Why does the right look at this as a negative instead of a positive? By the end of 2014, the answer will be clears enough.