In one of my recent blog posts I claimed that the problem with a “government run health-care system is that the people who are in most need of health care, the sick, seldom have the political clout necessary to change health care policy that adversely impacts them.” One of the commenters on our Facebook page replied, “ObamaCare is not government-run health care.”
Of coures, such sentiment is hardly limited to Facebook. See this blog post, for instance.
So let’s examines this notion by looking at what ObamaCare actually does. For starters, under ObamaCare, the government is telling you that you must buy health insurance or pay a fine. It is also telling you what kind of health insurance you must buy. And, at least is some places like Washington, DC, it is telling you where you must buy it.
If you are an insurer, the government tells what kind of insurance you can sell and that you must sell insurance to all comers. It also tells you that you cannot vary premiums for health status, how much you can vary premiums by age and what kind of medical-loss-ratio you must have. In short, it is telling you how to price your product.
If you are a business with 50-or-more full-time employee, the government tells you that you must provide insurance for your employees. And, it must be “adequate” insurance. If you do not provide insurance or the government deems it inadequate, it then tells you that you must pay a fine.
So, under ObamaCare does the government “run” health care? Of course not. It just tells us what to do.