However you feel about it, Donald Trump is going to be the next President of the United States. That means some things are going to change. With a Republican Congress, Trump is going to have the backing to do some of the things he had proposed during his campaign. One expected change is going to be to the Affordable Care Act (also known as Obamacare). Here's what you need to know to prepare yourself.
Obamacare sought to achieve something that we have not had in this country before: Healthcare for all. Although it has its share of downfalls, this healthcare reform has given unprecedented access to healthcare for many people.
Trump has stated that on day one he plans to get the ball rolling on repealing and replacing Obamacare. According to his website, he has laid out 7 goals of his healthcare reform:
Eliminate the individual mandate.
Allow for the sale of health insurance across state lines as long as the plan complies with the state's requirements.
Allow individuals to fully deduct health insurance premium payments from their tax returns.
Allow individuals to use Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) with contributions being tax free and able to accumulate.
Require price transparency from all healthcare providers to allow people to shop to find the best prices for procedures and exams.
Provide block-grants to state Medicaid and provide incentives to seek out and eliminate fraud, waste and abuse. (Block grants are money given from the Federal government to states for the general use of social welfare. This gives states maximum flexibility in directing the use of the funds.)
Remove barriers to entry into free markets for drug providers that offer safe, reliable and cheaper products.
In a recent interview, after he met with President Obama, Trump mentioned that he will likely keep the provisions that requires insurance to cover people with preexisting conditions, the opportunity for children to stay on their parents insurance until they are 26 and the provision that keeps insurance companies from charging higher premiums for those who are sick.
Without all of the specifics of what the new healthcare system, it is difficult to know exactly how this will affect everyone. Some of it doesn't seem bad, but there are definitely some things that give me pause. There are reports that millions of people will lose access to insurance with just the repeal of Obamacare and even more once his different plans are in place. There are also reports that the out-of-pocket costs will increase. At this point we do not know exactly what the replacement health care system will look like, so there is a lot of uncertainty out there.
If your insurance is through Obamacare, then it might not be a bad idea to go ahead and get any doctor's appointments that you need out of the way before the change does come. I've also seen several suggestions that women have conversations with their gynecologists about Intrauterine devices (IUDs) in case birth control is no longer free. One of the many perks of Obamacare is free birth control, a perk which many fear will go away under Republican control. An IUD would last through Trump's presidency and if you get it now, it's free. Just something to consider.
Change is coming folks. Talk with your healthcare providers and see what they suggest. Stay tuned to the news, as we move through this transition, hopefully more information will come out about his plan.
The bottom line for now is: Don't panic...Prepare!
Are you worried about what a Trump presidency will mean for your health? What concerns you the most? How are you preparing? Drop a comment and share. Subscribe so you don't miss and update
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