Expensive and unsustainable, Obamacare must go
By Virginia Foxx, North State Journal
In recent years, citizens from North Carolina — including working families, small business owners, and education leaders — have expressed their frustrations and concerns with the 2010 health care law. Working with the new Trump administration, Congress is taking the steps necessary to repeal the failed law and provide a pathway to better, more affordable care.
Former President Barack Obama promised Americans affordable care, more choices, and better competition. Instead, many are experiencing double-digit premium increases, higher deductibles, cancelled health care plans, and the loss of their preferred doctors.
Individuals aren’t the only ones being harmed. A recent report from the American Action Forum found that roughly 300,000 small business jobs were lost, and 10,000 small businesses closed, as a result of Obamacare’s costly effects. Obamacare has simply not lived up to any of what was promised, and working families in our state — and all across America — have suffered the consequences.
Republicans are on a rescue mission to provide the American people with the relief they desperately need.
Right here in North Carolina, 57-year-old Steve, from West Jefferson, watched his health care premiums increase from $600 a month to $1,950 a month over the past four years. In Kernersville, Patricia saw her premiums increase 80 percent this year. She is now paying more for less, as her benefits have decreased and her deductible is $6,550.
In Advance, a 70-year-old retiree named Terry is working part-time to help pay his wife’s health care premiums, which increased by $300 a month to $887 a month. Michael in Winston-Salem is paying an $831 monthly premium and a $14,300 deductible to cover himself and his daughter. These numbers are not just unaffordable — they’re outrageous.
Unfortunately, the bad news only gets worse. This year, North Carolinians are finding themselves with fewer options as two of the state’s three insurers have dropped out of the Obamacare marketplace. In October, the Washington Post reported that this disruption forces more than 250,000 people in our state to find new health insurance and leaves 95 of North Carolina’s 100 counties with only one insurer.
North Carolinians, like so many other Americans, are fed up. The current situation is unsustainable. That’s why Republicans are on a rescue mission to provide the American people with the relief they desperately need. It’s time to repeal this disastrous health care law and implement positive reforms to provide all Americans access to affordable, patient-centered health care.
For years, Republicans have worked to undo the damaging effects of Obamacare. We’ve put forward reforms that would expand coverage, lower health care costs, and promote a healthy workforce. Now, Congress has the opportunity to make these goals a reality. Earlier this month, Congress took its first steps toward repealing Obamacare and providing a stable transition to the affordable, patient-centered health care Americans deserve.
We will replace this flawed law and provide step-by-step solutions that give working families more control and more options. All Americans should be able to choose the health care plan that best fits their needs — not one dictated to them by Washington bureaucrats. We will expand options for employers who want to provide their employees with coverage and promote a healthy workforce. We will ensure protections for those who are most vulnerable so that — regardless of age, income, medical conditions, or circumstances — everyone will have access to high-quality health care that is truly affordable.
We have only just begun this process to deliver relief for families and small businesses being hurt by Obamacare. However, through these meaningful reforms, we will fix our broken health care system and provide a pathway to better, affordable care for all Americans.
Rep. Virginia Foxx, from Watauga County, is chairwoman of the U.S. House Committee on Education and the Workforce.