If your state is run by one of those Republican governors who is still refusing to participate in any way in the implementation of the Affordable Care Act’s state-level health insurance exchanges, here’s what you need to know: not participating makes the implementation more expensive, not less; not participating surrenders state control to the federal government, not the other way around. If your governor is refusing to participate in the creation of your state’s health insurance exchange, your governor is sabotaging your state’s sovereignty in service of a pointless ideological tantrum.
And that matters, to you, whether you know it or not.
Some states will have real market reform, and the state-level authorities will be actively involved in that reform, representing their constituents and steering the process of reform in a way that is most affordable, and helpful, given the lay of the land and the unique circumstances people face in communities across that state. This cannot be said of those states where ideologically captive governors abdicate their responsibility and invite the federal government to do all of the heavy lifting.
So, what are the benefits to you and your family, business or community, if your state gets its exchange architecture right?
- Health insurance that is more affordable, more comprehensive and more reliable.
- A marketplace where families, businesses and individuals don’t go bankrupt die t illness.
- A reinforced right to be alive, to have treatment when it is needed.
- Communities where the corrosive effects of chronic illness impose less degradation on the fabric of community, on household budgets, consumer spending and quality and affordability of services of all kinds.
- Hospitals that operate on reason, science and best practices, not under the bludgeon of relentlessly mounting unpaid care cases.
- Better chances for survival, for thriving, for generalized prosperity for you and your family.
Yes, the federal government will move to build the exchanges and implement all of the consumer-friendly and patient-protection elements of the Affordable Care Act. But when your governor, and your state government refuse to participate in the process, they forfeit control.
Make sure your governor knows you want local authorities to have a say in what the government is doing to make health insurance markets work better for you.