Did President Donald Trump get “health care glaze over” by sifting through the complicated policy choices of repealing and replacing Obamacare, so he can move on to tax reform? Did he wrongly align himself with a Republican leadership that falsely promised results and success if he went the way of industry, special interests and their previous legislative ideas of tweaking Obamacare?
One health care policy expert believes Trump’s alignment with House Speaker Paul Ryan’s American Health Care Act, dubbed Ryancare, risks a momentum loss like former President George H.W. Bush experienced when he broke his “no new taxes” campaign pledge in 1990.
Twila Brase is a certified public health nurse and the co-founder and president of the Citizens’ Council for Health Freedom (CCHF) in St. Paul, Minn. In this exclusive video interview for The Daily Caller News Foundation, we found her in Washington, D.C., talking with policy makers prior to the seventh anniversary of Obamacare on March 23. Her suggestions on health care reform are here.
She says with seven years of Obamacare, “big hospitals have gobbled up the little hospitals, the big insurers have gobbled up the little insurers,” causing higher prices, higher premiums, and higher deductibles.
The health plans’ powers, exerted in politics at the national and state level, have vastly expanded. People are finding their premiums are becoming “higher than their mortgage payments.” The law is causing some to be uninsured. “They’ve lost their doctors, lost their plans,” causing a great disruption and general unhappiness, she explains.
Having health insurance coverage under Obamacare now doesn’t necessarily equate to people having access to good health, Brase says. Money and power flowed under Obamacare to the health insurance companies that can deny coverage, drugs, specialists or benefits, while raising prices.
“Obamacare has shown us you can price people out of the market and Americans can’t get the care that they need, even if they’re covered.”
Brase regales how Republicans won massive electoral victories with the single promise of repealing Obamacare, in a March op-ed. But she says, “Their bill, the American Heath Care Act, just pulled from the House last Friday did not repeal Obamacare. It didn’t even replace Obamacare.”
Instead, Ryancare continued government-run health care with mandates, guaranteed-issue requirements and more, she says. “Nothing [in it would have] guaranteed prices will go down or access will go up” for patients, she says.
As for what went wrong, Brase says conservatives were never really welcomed and included in the policy discussions leading to this package. In fact, she says some speculate that the Republican establishment thought they didn’t need to consult conservatives, but could just use Trump to bully his base into agreeing to the concocted replacement bill.
Had the House voted on the Ryan bill, and had Trump voters figured out that Republicans had actually not repealed Obamacare and essentially subscribed to the government-management of health insurance, Brase worries that the expectations of Trump voters about draining Washington’s swamp would have been irreparably dashed.
Now, she calls on Trump “to make a decisive decision that we’re going to march back to freedom in health care, and not just keep going towards socialized medicine under corporate cover.”
The last part of the video interview discusses Brase’s out-of-the-box “Wedge of Health Freedom” plan CCHF launched last year. Now with over 200 doctors participating, it is a “free trade zone” of doctors and patients practicing medicine without the constraints of third party payments. It brings back privacy, pocket-book pricing and an improved patient-doctor relationship for care.
Find a doctor on their website and try it out, as we wait for politicians to make good on their campaign promises of repealing the care-threatening, job-killing Obamacare we thought Republicans would end.
Videographer Sean Moody is credited with the video work for this piece.
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