The Beltway media and politicians continuously deride the Affordable Care Act and its legal and political challenges ahead. They also seemed to be ready to pounce if healthcare.gov did not work perfectly upon open enrollment on November 15. But what is virtually never discussed are the many benefits that the law has brought to millions of individuals and entire communities.
Pet insurance shares many features with human health insurance: Policies typically have monthly premiums, annual deductibles, copayments and exclusions, and some limit which veterinarians, clinics and hospitals you can use, while others set no such restrictions. But there are numerous differences as well.
In the play Waiting for Godot, Godot never arrives, but the entire play is consumed with hand-wringing about what might happen if he did appear. In the case of the Affordable Care Act, there is similar hand-wringing over the Supreme Court decision about the fate of health reform, although we know the answer will arrive by the end of June. What are the possibilities for a Court decision on health reform and what might the impact be in each case? If the entire Act is declared unconstitutional, Americans could lose a number of benefits that have already been implemented; or, we could lose the opportunity, once health reform is fully implemented in 2014, to choose a health plan through a state exchange. With that loss, we would see a revival of the high cost of individual insurance plans and the chance of being rejected for coverage.