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Friday, September 29, 2023

Staff Editorial

No contingency plan in place for health care law

“There’s no contingency plan in place,” said White House spokesman Josh Earnest during Wednesday’s White House briefing. “We remain fully confident in the belief that the Affordable Care Act is constitutional.”

However it is beginning to appear that the U.S. Supreme Court, which will issue its decision on the case by late June, does not believe so, or at least that all parts of it are.

The main area of contention is whether or not the law’s individual mandate is constitutional. The individual mandate requires all individuals who can afford health-care insurance to purchase some form of a policy.

Individuals who refuse to purchase a policy will be fined $695 a year or 2.5 percent of their income. Penalties for not following the mandate would go into effect in 2016.

The individual mandate portion of the law has led to harsh questioning by some of the justices, leading many to believe that it will be struck down in the court’s decision.

If that portion of the bill is struck down, individuals on both sides of the issue believe the health care market could go through a shock.

According to Alissa Fox, the senior vice president at the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, dropping the individual mandate would wreck havoc on the health care industry.

“If the mandate goes, people can literally buy coverage on the way to the hospital and then drop it the next day,” Alissa said.

The Obama administration has said that they are not considering a Plan B if the mandate is struck down. However, they should be considering one.

“I think that people have confidence the court will do the right thing,” said Sen. John Kerry about the issue, before acknowledging that there is “discussion quietly among some people about ‘what ifs.’”

It seems the Obama administration should join in on this discussion.

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