Email #18, Subject: high risk health insurance pools

Under the Empowering Patients First Act, states would create and the federal government would fund high-risk pools for the sick and poor. But the bill doesn’t fund these pools nearly enough. These are the most expensive people to insure because they have such big medical costs. Obamacare tries to deal with those costs by including high-risk and low-risk people into the same pool and so balancing the overall costs. But your preferred bill doesn’t address the problem. Worse, it doesn’t acknowledge that the problem exists. The bill’s author, Tom Price, is proposing only $3 billion. I think Speaker Ryan is proposing $25 billion over ten years, which still isn’t nearly enough. If this bill replaces Obamacare millions are going to lose insurance. How is that “empowering patients”? The phrase is Orwellian. I know making health care work is a huge challenge, but denying the core problem and passing a bill designed to uninsure the old and sick is the opposite of fixing Obamacare. You said you were working for a bi-partisan solution. I hope those weren’t empty words.

Chris Gavaler


Author: Chris Gavaler

Chris Gavaler is an assistant professor of English at Washington and Lee University where he teaches creative writing, contemporary fiction, and comics. He has published two novels, Pretend I'm Not Here (HarperCollins 2002) and School For Tricksters (Southern Methodist University 2011), and two nonfictions, On the Origin of Superheroes (Iowa University 2015) and Superhero Comics (Bloomsbury forthcoming 2017).

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