Yes, Some Americans are Being Forced to Switch their Health Insurance Plans – But That’s a Good Thing

aca1As more Americans begin to experience the impact of the Affordable Care Act (aka “Obamacare”), to say the rollout has been a little rocky would be quite the understatement.

While many people are well aware of the issues the website has experienced since it launched at the beginning of October, there’s another growing issue some Americans are facing—those who are losing their current health insurance plans.

But wait, didn’t President Obama promise that people would be allowed to keep their current insurance under “Obamacare?”  Well, yes, he did.  But he shouldn’t have.

Granted, most Americans will be allowed to keep their current health insurance, but it’s unavoidable that there will still be quite a few that will have to choose a different plan.

The fact is President Obama has done a horrible job at explaining the Affordable Care Act to Americans.  He sat by too long while Republicans controlled the message and distorted the facts about the law so greatly that many Americans still don’t know what’s real and what’s not.  Perhaps this is why he now has Bill Clinton trying to do damage control.

One reality some are unfortunately facing is that they will have to choose another insurance plan.  Again, something President Obama assured Americans they wouldn’t have to do.  That’s on him.  There’s no excuse for him misleading the American people on that reality and I’m not going to sit by and tell you he was right for not being completely honest.

What I will say, however, is that the reason why some Americans are having to switch insurance plans is actually a good thing.

See, before the Affordable Care Act, many Americans really only had the illusion of health insurance.  They had plans that provided such terrible coverage, calling them “health” insurance should have been criminal.

What the Affordable Care Act requires is that health insurance companies actually provide decent coverage.  It doesn’t allow health insurance companies to offer plans that masquerade as health insurance.   Plans are now required to cover things such as pre-existing conditions and maternity care—two things many private insurance plans left out for the sake of “lower premiums.”

So granted, some premiums for Americans are going up (Republican obstruction plays a big part in that as well) and some people are being required to switch insurance companies and plans—but neither are necessarily bad.

I know telling someone that it’s good that they’ll soon be paying more for their health insurance seems a bit ridiculous.  But, with the requirements put forth by the Affordable Care Act, many Americans are actually getting “more bang for their buck” instead of just an illusion of health coverage.

So, the reality is that while some Americans are having to switch their health insurance plans (even though President Obama said they wouldn’t) it’s due in part because their previous health insurance plan provided such minimal coverage it didn’t meet the requirements in the Affordable Care Act.

After all, what the Affordable Care Act aims to do isn’t just insure Americans, it also wants to make sure Americans have health insurance that actually provides real coverage.

Granted, this isn’t the situation for every American who’s encountering higher premiums or being forced to switch health plans.  The Affordable Care Act is far from perfect and I’m sure many bugs will need to be worked out as the law continues its rollout.  But even if 90% of Americans end up loving “Obamacare,” the law will never please everyone.  There will always be situations posted by the opposition of “horror stories” experienced by some Americans — that’s just the reality of things.  Do we really think that any law like this that gets passed in our country will be 100% beneficial to everybody?

So, while President Obama should have been more forthright when he said Americans would be allowed to keep their health insurance (the vast majority of them will), that doesn’t negate the fact that under the Affordable Care Act, the health plans Americans receive will provide actual health insurance as opposed to just the illusion of coverage.  And that is, quite frankly, a BFD.

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.


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