T-1 and counting!
The countdown to enroll in health insurance under the Affordable Care Act is winding down. Open enrollment ends midnight tonight. Those who fail to enroll will face a tax/fine when they pay their federal taxes next year.
As expected the ACA is experiencing a surge of activity in the final hours. This past weekend the call center handled a record 2.5 million calls. The website recorded over 9 million hits in the month of March leaving little doubt that the interest is there. We may have number of deficiencies as a nation…but we have made procrastination into an art form.
Naturally critics of the president’s signature piece of legislation weighed in. “They’re cooking the books.” Senator John Barrosso (R-WY.) protested; failing to produce any evidence to back his claim. Others warned of double digit rate increases and sketchy policy terms. False claims and fear mongering…that’s what you do when you don’t have a viable plan of your own.
Tonight’s deadline is just another in a series of hurdles that the ACA will face. Rates will go up temporarily as insurance companies adjust to the new terms and conditions. More people will lose their current plan. Some people will have to find a different doctor. And there will still be tens of millions of Americans without coverage. There will be more bumps in the road. That much is certain.
What is also certain is that while the plan is flawed it’s not going anywhere. Those who call for its repeal are baying at the moon. There will certainly be modifications. But the ACA is here to stay.