The Affordable Care Act - Dispelling FUD

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Re: The Affordable Care Act - Dispelling FUD

Postby VinTek » Fri Sep 21, 2012 2:15 pm

Well it looks like the AARP has caught on to Ryan's budget.

Paul Ryan booed over Medicare at AARP convention

LA Times wrote:Just five minutes into his talk at the gathering of the powerful 50-and-older lobby on Friday, the architect of the Republican proposal to change Medicare for the next generation of seniors was repeatedly interrupted as he criticized President Obama’s healthcare law.

"The first step to a stronger Medicare is to repeal Obamacare, because it represents the worst of both worlds," Ryan said as the crowd in New Orleans booed audibly.

"I had a feeling there'd be mixed reaction," Ryan acknowledged, pausing briefly. "So let me get into it."

But Ryan only drew further objections from the crowd as he provided a more detailed explanation for his criticism of the healthcare law.

When he suggested that Obama was cutting $716 billion from Medicare over the next decade to pay for the costs of insuring more Americans under the healthcare law, those gathered booed. Ryan's own budget relies on using the same savings from Medicare, but he applies it to paying down the nation's deficit.

Ryan also elicited a round of objections when he suggested that the healthcare law "weakens Medicare for today's seniors and puts it at risk for the next generation." The healthcare law reduces spending on Medicare payments to providers, which officials have said would add eight years to the program's solvency, though it is still expected run out of money by 2024.

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Romney's Baffling Claim About Medicare Pay Cuts For Doctors

Postby VinTek » Fri Nov 02, 2012 9:09 am

Interestingly enough, even at this late date, Romney is generating new FUD about the ACA.

Health care in general — and Medicare, in particular — have been big parts of this year's presidential campaign.

But over the last couple of weeks, Republican Mitt Romney has been making a new claim that doesn't quite clear the accuracy bar.

It has to do with $716 billion in Medicare reductions over 10 years included in the federal health law, the Affordable Care Act. And it's become a standard part of Romney's stump speech.

Here's how he put it last week in his big economic speech in Ames, Iowa:

Romney wrote:It matters to the senior who needs to get an appointment with a medical specialist, but is told by one receptionist after another that the doctor isn't taking any new Medicare patients; because Medicare has been slashed to pay for Obamacare.

"Not true," says Harold Pollack, a professor of public health policy at the University of Chicago. "I'm honestly rather baffled at the arguments that Governor Romney is making."

Now it is true that the law envisions reductions in Medicare. And some of that money will help pay for the rest of the law. And there are problems in some places with doctors not being willing to accept Medicare patients. But those two things aren't actually connected.

The problem with Medicare pay for doctors actually predates passage of the health law by more than a decade — it's a preexisting condition, if you will, Pollack says. "And every year, Congress has to go through the song and dance with something called the doctor fix to prevent Medicare fees from a fairly catastrophic reduction. That has nothing to do with the Affordable Care Act. Health reform does not cut physician fees."

In fact, the nation's doctors were furious when the health law passed in 2010 that it didn't fix the doctor fee problem. It turned out that would have been too expensive. That's why Congress is still grappling with the problem today.

The law did, however, take a few steps to boost some payments for some doctors, says Pollack, including "improving reimbursement for primary care providers" in both Medicare as well as the Medicaid program, where the shortage of doctors has been even more acute.

So how does Gov. Romney back his claim?

A campaign email pointed to a 2010 survey of doctors by the Physicians Foundation, in which 30 percent said the law would prompt them to close their practices to new Medicare patients. But the survey had a response rate of only 2.4%, and more than two-thirds of those who responded started out with a self-described negative view of the law.

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Re: The Affordable Care Act - Dispelling FUD

Postby DoingHomework » Fri Nov 02, 2012 10:51 am

Yeah. But let's say what he said was not a lie. Let's say it was true. He still did not tell us what he would do to fix the underlying problem! It's one thing to describe a problem and propose a solution. It's quite another to bad mouth your opponent without offering any productive solutions. Unfortunately there are enough voters that can't see through his nonsense that he still has a slight chance.

Did you read the interesting comments from Michael Bloomberg yesterday? In short, he is endorsing Obama. He thinks Obama is the guy who can bridge the political iceberg between the parties as Romney has alienated everyone with his slippery positions and lack of any stand on anything. And Bloomberg is a moderate who was a Republican all his life until 2008 when he got fed up with the party. The man is unarguably pro-business and certainly not a liberal by any stretch.

Personally I am getting to the point that I hardly care who wins next Tuesday...for any race. I just want to incessant robocalls and vicious attack post cards to stop.

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