Advocates for repeal of Obamacare are focusing their arguments on what they deem to be the harm caused by the law.
Patients who lost their doctors, take home reduced, higher out of pocket costs, and even lost jobs followed the introduction and implementation of the law, according to a health care expert and strong opponent of the Affordable Care Act.
Robert Graboyes, a senior research fellow at George Mason University’s Mercatus Center, is a vocal critic of the ACA. He is calling for repeal, replace and retrench. When the topic of repeal is raised, Obamacare supporters cite the beneficiaries but “ignore the casualties,” Graboyes told Patient Daily
The law did expand insurance rolls, though Graboyes points out that half of the newly enrolled ended up in poor-quality Medicaid.
“But that expansion meant that other patients lost their trusted doctors,” he said. “Tens of millions saw their take-home pay reduced through increased taxes, higher out-of-pocket health care costs, and lost jobs.”
Graboyes added that the law “constrained the ability of small businesses to grow and hire more employees and put the brakes on medical device developers.”
“The coverage increases have mostly come to a halt and could even begin to reverse,” he said. “There are better, less expensive ways of assuring that the sick receive adequate care.”
The ACA and its future is front and center of political debate in Washington and beyond. The breath of the argument from full scale reform to making only minor changes.
There does seem to some consensus among many Republicans that the most popular elements - including family coverage for those under 26 and those dealing with pre-existing conditions - should remain.
The focus should be on reforming the exchanges and giving the states more control over the delivery of Medicaid, Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN), the chair of Health, Education, Labor and Pensions committee, argued.
But Graboyes argues there are full scale structural problems with the law that are linked and related, making it more likely the entire act will be ripped up and reformed.
In an editorial published by US News and World Report, Graboyes wrote that the “full-throated rhetorical war over the Affordable Care Act has begun.”
And he predicted Obamacare will “meet its demise its demise in the coming days, weeks or months. “
“Given its structural infirmities – soaring premiums and deductibles, collapsing exchanges and CO-OPs, unbalanced risk pools – that would almost certainly have been true under a Hillary Clinton presidency, as well; it just may have taken a little longer,” Graboyes argued.
Obamacare supporters believe any reform will endanger coverage for the millions who gained it since the introduction of the law.
But Graboyes said that “opponents can truthfully craft a three-part counterargument: 1) the way the law paid for that increased coverage harmed vastly more millions, some severely; 2) the coverage gains that supporters tout may in part be transitory; and 3) there are better ways to expand coverage.”