Monday, March 22, 2010

WyoDems' Leslie Petersen: "Today we made history"

Wyoming Democratic Party Chair Leslie Petersen of Wilson issued a statement last night after the passage of the health care reform package by the U.S. House:

"Today we made history. President Obama and Democrats in Congress achieved what Presidents since Teddy Roosevelt have attempted -- to pass comprehensive health insurance reform to help the American people. This is a victory for all Wyoming residents. With this landmark legislation, we will have a health care system that works for people in Wyoming, and not against them for the profits of insurance companies.

Find the full text of the release at

There are provisions in the bill that don't take effect immediately, some stretching out to 2014 and 2016. But there are some good ones that we will see this year:

SMALL BUSINESS TAX CREDITS - Offers tax credits to small businesses to make employee coverage more affordable. Tax credits of up to 35 percent of premiums will be immediately available to firms that choose to offer coverage. Effective beginning for calendar year 2010.

FREE PREVENTIVE CARE UNDER MEDICARE - Eliminates co-payments for preventive services and exempts preventive services from deductibles under the Medicare program. Effective beginning January 1, 2011.

ENDS RESCISSIONS - Bans insurance companies from dropping people from coverage when they get sick. Effective 6 months after enactment.

NO DISCRIMINATION AGAINST CHILDREN WITH PRE-EXISTING CONDITIONS - Prohibits new health plans in all markets plus grandfathered group health plans from denying coverage to children with pre-existing conditions. Effective 6 months after enactment.

BANS LIFETIME LIMITS ON COVERAGE - Prohibits health insurance companies from placing lifetime caps on coverage. Effective 6 months after enactment.

BANS RESTRICTIVE ANNUAL LIMITS ON COVERAGE - Tightly restricts the use of annual limits to ensure access to needed care in all new plans and grandfathered group health plans. These tight restrictions will be defined by HHS. Effective 6 months after enactment.

FREE PREVENTIVE CARE UNDER NEW PRIVATE PLANS - Requires new private plans to cover preventive services with no co-payments and with preventive services being exempt from deductibles. Effective 6 months after enactment.

NEW, INDEPENDENT APPEALS PROCESS - Ensures consumers in new plans have access to an effective internal and external appeals process to appeal decisions by their health insurance plan. Effective 6 months after enactment.

ENSURING VALUE FOR PREMIUM PAYMENTS - Requires plans in the individual and small group market to spend 80 percent of premium dollars on medical services, and plans in the large group market to spend 85 percent. Insurers that do not meet these thresholds must provide rebates to policyholders. Effective on January 1, 2011.

EXTENDS COVERAGE FOR YOUNG PEOPLE UP TO 26TH BIRTHDAY THROUGH PARENTS' INSURANCE - Requires new health plans and certain grandfathered plans to allow young people up to their 26th birthday to remain on their parents' insurance policy, at the parents' choice. Effective 6 months after enactment.

COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS - Increases funding for Community Health Centers to allow for nearly a doubling of the number of patients seen by the centers over the next 5 years. Effective beginning in fiscal year 2010.

PROHIBITING DISCRIMINATION BASED ON SALARY - Prohibits group health plans from establishing any eligibility rules for health care coverage that have the effect of discriminating in favor of higher wage employees. Effective 6 months after enactment.

All of these can be filed under "reform" and possibly even "empathy."


mpage225 said...

Great summary, Mike. Debbie got pretty fired up and emailed our Reps and Senators, including Kit Bond and let them know that we wanted this bill enacted. Unbelievable that it has finally passed. I was very disappointed to see my Congressman, Emanuel Cleaver get spit upon. The level of violence in opposition to this bill is a bit frightening and will I believe get worse. Thanks for all you do.

Bob and Debbie

bigfrank said...

The wife works at a doctor's office. This doctor is going to hang it up. I also read in one of his magazines that they expect 46% of the doctors to do the same!!!! 46% OF DOCTORS QUITTING!!! But it is all ok because we have health coverage.
Let me ask you a question. I want you as a father to answer this not as a "party man".
You kid is sick. Real sick. You take your kid to the emergency room. In front of your kid is a meth head. The doctors know this meth head by name because he is in all the time on the brink of death because of his meth. Your kid is behind this meth head. What do you do? Your kid is on the brink of death also but this meth head is first.
I know what I would do and if I save my kid it would be worth it. Thanks to Obama saying there would be a 5 day review of "ALL" bills they will catch this right? They won’t rush it though so freaking quick because they are scared of the public and their hatred of this bill will they?
A bill of this importance and magnitude MUST be studied every way and government can't have their grubby dirty fingers in it. Freddy, Fanny, social security, Medicare (which many doctors, and pharmacies are dropping now or not going to take any more, did you catch that?)is working so well.
Do you know what is going to happen to the working man? He is going to get fired from his job and then hired back as a contractor. Supply it yourself the employer is going to say. Which that could be good for the American people might wake up and see how the government is stealing us blind and then shove a foot in Tom Perriello who said they are stealing from us.
But hey we will all have health care. We even get to carry those liberal states that are doing so good with their entitlements programs like California, New Jersey.... What was that? They are broke? They are giving IOU's to people? They have no more money to give out? Well at least they have health care.