The newly enacted Health Reform law is taking hits again. The House Republicans voted to repeal grant funding for a part of the health care law that would create insurance exchanges across the states. These marketplaces would let individuals and (small) businesses shop and compare policies and their prices.
The Republicans voted to deny the funding for the insurance marketplace plan, which is a key element of the reform law. The Republicans feel that it gives too much power to the government to set coverage and plan details. The Republicans also have a budget plan that was drafted by Paul Ryan, Representative from Wisconsin.
The Republican plan would phase out and end the government ran Medicare plans and give funding to private insurers to supply health coverage for the elderly. The debate has continued to be argued by the Republicans that the set up of an insurance marketplace would not be a free market structure.
The Democrats argue that portions of the reform law have all ready started helping millions of people. By denying the grant funding to assist states in setting up an insurance exchange, it will make it even harder for states that are short on funding to establish the exchanges.
That would in turn give the government more power, by allowing the government to step in and create an exchange. Under the reform law, any state that doesn’t establish an exchange will have one established for them by the government.
The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) reported that delaying funds for the insurance exchanges would save more than 14 billion dollars over the next ten years; mainly, because less people would buy government funded insurance. They also stated that delaying funding would end with about half a million people without health coverage by 2015.
Amendments to House Republican Bill 1214 are being debated now. This bill rescinds 100 million in funding over the next two fiscal years for the construction of school based health facilities. One of the amendments would require a study to see which schools may need federal help to construct the on-premises health facilities.