Monday, March 19, 2012


It's not like the lies about the health reform law have just started to be told; they've been around for two years. But so has the truth. Why hasn't every American done whatever they need to do to get full and accurate information about the law?

Why do people listen to crap like this

It is NOT true that health care will be rationed.

It is NOT true that illegal immigrants will be able to get health care.

It is NOT true that the reason for "linguistic and ethnic appropriateness" is to make the law understandable to illegal immigrants. It's to make the law understandable to people in the United States legally whose first language is not English.

It is NOT true that all doctors, regardless of specialty, will be paid the same. Where do they get this?

It is NOT true that your health care spending will be limited to $5000 indiv/$10,000 family. There are out-of-pocket maximums that limit what you personally will have to spend before your insurance covers at 100%, but these are not limits on benefits you can receive.

It is NOT true that you will not have a choice about what benefits you want covered in your health insurance. It IS true that the states will choose an essential benefits package that will serve as a floor, the minimum that will qualify as a "qualified health plan" through the exchanges. You will have the option of buying insurance outside of the exchanges, and inside the exchanges, you will have the option of buying a bronze, silver, gold or platinum plan if you want more services and/or lower deductibles, copays, coinsurance. I don't have national data, but a very recent report found that 50% of plans in Connecticut do not provide all of the "essential benefits," so you're going to get more under health reform, not less.

I have neither the time nor the inclination to go through every single lie told in this 10 minute video. Suffice it to say that the person who created it doesn't care about making sure you get accurate information; they have a particular point of view. While I am pro-reform and have never hidden that, if I thought there was something negative in it, I would tell you. Indeed, we have written lots of comments on regulations implementing the law that point out aspects with which we disagree.

But here's what I think is a good rule of thumb: If it sounds crazy, it probably is. Jennifer


  1. Thank you for writing this so succinctly. I needed something brief to send to someone who "fell for" this video.
    Rob in NC

  2. Dear Jennifer, thank you for this explanation. I just received this "scary video" from a well intended friend. What we need is a 5th grade level (unfortunately that seems to be the level of comprehension of most Americans) explaining the health care plan in lay man's terms. If there is a link to such material I would greatly appreciate it. I have been trying to go through the plan myself and it is mind boggling and Im not that dumb... please help.
    Peter Fernandez, Miami

  3. Here's a great link for you It's an animated video that breaks it all down really clearly. Hope that helps. Jennifer