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The Affordable Care Act: you be the judge

Posted: June 28, 2012 - 3:45 PM ET - by Elisabeth

No one disagrees about the need to improve healthcare in the United States … but today it seems no one agrees how to do it. It’s a critical issue for many of Ritz Communications’ clients, colleagues and friends. It’s a critical issue for every citizen.

Today the Supreme Court upheld the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, including the minimum coverage provision (or “individual mandate”) requiring that virtually all Americans buy health insurance or pay a penalty, ruling it is constitutional as a tax. In addition, the court upheld the expansion of Medicaid to cover nearly all people under age 65 with household incomes at or below 133% of the federal poverty level beginning in 2014. The court struck down the provision that gives the Secretary of Health and Human Services authority to penalize states for not complying with the Medicaid expansion.

Advocates are highlighting a win for provisions that address discriminatory insurance practices, the option for children up to age 26 to obtain coverage under their parents’ plans and the requirement for employers with more than 50 employees to provide health insurance to those employees. Opponents are criticizing the mandate as a tax; the unfair financial burden on individuals, businesses and states; and the increasing size and cost of federal government.

Traditional and social media channels are filled with analysis and opinion, but we would like to hear from you:

  • Do you believe we have moved toward ensuring affordable healthcare for millions of Americans or toward limiting choices and increasing healthcare costs?
  • Do you believe we have addressed a fundamental issue of social justice or launched an attack on individual liberties?
  • Have we taken a step toward fixing, or just given more people access to, a broken system?
  • Business owners: what’s your reaction to the impact of this decision on jobs and economic growth?

I’m turning over today’s blog to our readers. Please share your thoughts and questions (we’ll help find the experts to answer them) here or on our Facebook page.

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