January 4, 2017

Trump and the GOP prepared to kill thousands

Sam Smith - I was never a fan of Obamacare, considering it badly drafted and just asking for trouble, which it certainly got. The bill contained the excellent, the poor and the uncertain but in a manner in which the best would be badly endangered by the worst.

Yet once passed, some important provisions of the bill - most notably the expansion of Medicaid, a 1965 measure - have been of indisputable benefit. In fact, one estimate suggests that if all states had gone along with the Medicaid expansion it would save about 15,000 lives a year instead of the 5,000 currently estimated for partial state involvement.

As for other lives, Huffington Post reports:
The ACA’s full coverage of preventive care without copays — which includes things like cancer screenings, vaccinations, and smoking cessation interventions — is undoubtedly saving lives. The National Commission on Prevention Priorities estimates that approximately 100,000 lives could be saved each year in the U.S. if just five preventive services (daily aspirin use, smoking cessation, colorectal cancer screening, flu immunization, and mammograms) were scaled up.

Meanwhile, chronic diseases that would have otherwise progressed unchecked are being diagnosed and treated. A study published last year in Diabetes Care found the number of patients diagnosed with diabetes increased by 23 percent from 2013 to 2014 in the 26 states that expanded eligibility for Medicaid under the ACA; in the 24 states that didn’t expand Medicaid, the increase in the number of patients diagnosed with diabetes was less than half of one percent. This means that in one year, as a result of the expanded health care access brought about by the ACA, about 3,500 people who would otherwise not have been diagnosed with diabetes now know that they have this serious health condition and are, hopefully, being treated for it.
And, according to Daily Kos last year:
Last December, the administration announced that Obamacare programs to improve hospital safety have resulted in 50,000 fewer preventable deaths since 2010. Because good news on Obamacare travels very slowly, the report didn't get a lot of attention. Not until President Obama included that news in his speech marking the fifth anniversary of Obamacare's signing. That warranted enough attention for the Washington Post's fact checker to get around to fact checking, and it turns out that, yeah, it's true, and in fact, might be actually understated.
Roughly speaking, it's probably fair to say that Obamacare, for all its faults, saves one third to two thirds as many lives as die every year in automobile accidents. Or more than the US troops who died each year in the late 1960s in Vietnam.

So the current debate about Obamacare is not just about healthcare or budgets, it's about mass killing by legislative action. Repealing Obamacare is not just bad politics it is approving the manslaughter of thousands.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hmmmmm....and what about all those effectively denied medical care due to the increases in insurance deductibles caused by the so-called Affordable Health Care Act?

Not so balanced reporting Mr. Smith.

Anonymous said...

I presume that you don't actually have Obamacare, Sam. Just a guess. I'm a longtime Dem, voted for Obama, and have had Obamacare for three years now. I have found it to be horrendous beyond imagination, far and away the biggest rip off I have ever encountered, and an absolute disaster in every way. I've been paying premiums for three years, a substantial amount of money, yet with the $6000 deductible haven't collected even a single penny in benefits. It's useless in every way. I count the days until it's repealed. Save me considerable money, time and energy, and remove a major nightmare from my life. Might be time to stop being an apologist for the corporate Democrats Sam and start being a journalist, reporting the truth about what a catastrophe it has been.

Anonymous said...

The ACA is an affordable, ineffective travesty.
All that is has successfully accomplished is imposing an additional financial burden upon folks with budgets already strained to the max. Agree completely with the two previous comments.
Sam, you're just pushing more DNC propaganda and frankly it's getting pretty old.
Et,tu Sammy? What's the deal, have you been hanging out with Brownie of late? Trying to get in on that foundation gravy train that keeps him going with an annual six figure income playing progressive advocate?

Anonymous said...

Obama care is mediocre at best, if you can actually afford to buy or use it.