Viewpoints: Trump’s Latest Attack On Health Law Will Drive Up Costs; Shelters For Immigrants Profit Off Kids’ Trauma
Editorial pages focus on these and other health care issues.
Trump’s New Obamacare Sabotage Could Really Stick It To Consumers
The Trump administration’s new attack on Obamacare will expose consumers to surprise, sometimes staggering medical bills. Just ask some of the state officials who deal with these kinds of issues every day. ... state insurance officials like Jessica Altman, who is insurance commissioner in Pennsylvania, say the administration isn’t telling the public or would-be buyers the whole story about what the [short-term] policies will cover ― and, more importantly, what they will not cover. “I’m frustrated with how [administration officials] are presenting this,” Altman said in an interview. “They’re saying, ‘Here’s this option that’s affordable and wonderful,’ and not talking about how limited the plans are.” (Jonathan Cohn, 8/5)
Immigrant Children Aren't Kept In Cages, But Shelter Isn't Much Better
For years, politicians in Congress have allowed companies to profit off children’s misery and trauma. These children escaped death, some being physically or sexually assaulted along the way, crossing a desert in unimaginable heat, only to endure mental health damage and sexual assault at our hands so that a president can force an immoral border policy on a supposedly moral country. (Juan Mendez, 8/6)
What Does 'Normal' Mean When You Live With A Disability?
As imperative as the ADA is — it is important for America to have a law that clearly outlines the requirements and responsibilities of government entities, public facilities, employers, stores, etc. — to those of us who manage chronic health issues, the ADA alone cannot undo a cultural mindset of what society considers “normal.” (Laura Beretsky, 8/7)
Trump's Travel Restrictions Will Make Americans Sicker, Not Safer
It’s debatable whether the U.S. Supreme Court’s 5-4 decision to uphold President Trump’s policy to prevent people from five Muslim-majority countries from entering the United States will protect national security. But it is certain to be a setback for the health of Americans. The travel ban now restricts certain visa classifications for citizens of Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen, as well as those from North Korea and Venezuelan government officials. While it applies broadly to individuals in all fields of study and professional practice, it has a disproportionate impact on the field of medicine. Millions of Americans, particularly those in underserved communities, depend on foreign doctors, thousands of whom hail from countries affected by the restrictions. (William W. Pinsky, 8/7)
A Push For Drug Decriminalization Surges In Countries Around The World — Could The US Be Next?
Drug decriminalization has rapidly emerged as a mainstream political issue in Canada and several other countries, but few U.S. policymakers have embraced it so far. That could change soon. Ending criminal penalties for drug possession, often referred to as decriminalization, means nobody gets arrested, goes to jail or prison, or faces other forms of criminal punishment simply for possessing a small amount of drugs for personal use. This concept is already supported by a majority of the U.S. public, as well as leading governmental, medical, public health and civil rights groups. (Jag Davies, 8/6)
There's No Place Like Home For Health Care For The Homebound
An estimated 400,000 elderly Americans are completely homebound; another 1.6 million leave their homes at most once a week. Homebound individuals are more likely to be elderly, less educated, female, and non-white, groups that already have trouble accessing health care. They are also more likely to have multiple chronic medical conditions. Yet only 12 percent of completely homebound individuals report receiving medical care at home. Home-based interventions such as primary care visits have consistently been linked to good health outcomes and significant cost savings. (Ifedayo Olufemi Kuye, 8/7)
With Kavanaugh On Deck, Pro-Life Movement Needs A Future Beyond Abortion
Imagine if the end of Roe were not the end of our advocacy, but the beginning? What if we saw ourselves, not merely as conservatives or anti-abortion activists, but as people who are always, everywhere advocating for policies that help the most vulnerable flourish? Imagine a new kind of politics where the ethic of human dignity disrupted our political categories, uniting those who see the humanity of the unborn with those who see the humanity of the immigrant, the disabled, the infirm, and the elderly? Imagine a new era of civility where we saw dignity even in our fiercest opponents and worked, with whoever is willing, to end injustices against the innocent? (Daniel Darling, 8/7)
Lawsuit Exposes Fatal Flaw In ObamaCare's Individual Mandate
The most recent challenge to the Affordable Care Act, a Texas-led, 20-state lawsuit, made news when the U.S. Department of Justice conceded the unconstitutionality of the individual mandate. This action aroused passion, including concern even from groups opposed to the ACA. But, no one who dislikes the ACA as a policy should worry about the legal process of this new challenge. (Robert Henneke and Braden Boucek, 8/6)