How Healthcare Reform Affects You

Separating fact from fiction

HEALTHCARE REFORM MYTHS

Myth: Employers will drop coverage and force American workers into the public plan.

Fact: No one will be forced to enter a public option. The House estimates that one in 10 Americans will enter the Health Insurance Exchange on their own where they will be given a choice between a public option and a variety of private plans. If some companies, such as small businesses that are exempt from the employer mandate, provide insurance through the exchange the employees make that choice.

Myth: Government bureaucrats will be allowed to decide on the care and treatments available to patients, also known as rationing.

Fact: Currently there are no caps on costly treatments and insurance companies can decide to provide or refuse coverage. The government would create an independent committee of doctors, patient advocates, and other experts that would provide comparative effectiveness research to make recommendations about

Myth: The House bill will create a government panel to make end-of-life decisions for seniors or force them to make life-shortening decisions.

Fact: The House bill reimburses fees patients pay to voluntarily discuss their end-of life care preferences, so their wishes will be honored. In addition, there is no mandate to create a living will or advance care directive.

Myth: Your taxes will be raised to pay for healthcare reform.

Fact: The House bill calls for the wealthiest 1.2% of Americans to pay a surcharge on income exceeding $350,000 for joint filers.

Myth: Reform would force taxpayers to pay for abortion.

Fact: While private insurance companies will be able to offer this service, the House bill would not. A Commerce and Energy committee amendment states that no federal funds can be used to pay for abortions except in the case of rape, incest, or the life of the woman.

Myth: Reform will provide immigrants with free health insurance.

Fact: The House bill states that “individuals who are not lawfully present in the United States” won’t be allowed to receive subsidies.

Myth: Democrats want to socialize medicine so the federal government can control decisions about your healthcare.

Fact: Under socialized medicine, a government finances and directly provides healthcare services. House and Senate proposals preserve employer-based coverage, private insurance plans, and the freedom to choose your own doctors.

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