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Obamacare is doomed by sky-high drug prices

The vast majority of the millions of Americans receiving cancellation notices from their insurance companies prefer to keep both their existing insurance coverage and its lower cost compared to what’s being offered in the Obamacare exchanges. They do not consider themselves “underinsured,” as President Obama claims. They see that he broke his promise that they could keep their existing plans.

These are predominantly small-employer and individual pay plans with no deductible and no co-insurance, i.e., excellent tailored plans that require just a $10 to $20 co-pay per visit. However, most of these groups lack a prescription drug rider – a requirement of Obamacare – which typically doubles the cost of health plans. Under the Affordable Care Act, this supposed “deficiency” has enabled greedy insurance companies to cancel these policies and to force people into the exchanges, where only deductible/co-insurance plans are available, often at more than double the out-of-pocket cost of their existing plans.

The New York Times, among others, has shown American prescription drug costs to be up to 10 times those of Canada and Europe. Repeated calls by AARP and others for effective drug-cost controls, long in place in most civilized countries, have fallen on deaf ears here.

Instead, Obama brought in Liz Fowler, a vice president at health insurance giant Wellpoint, to write the health law. Afterward, Fowler went to work for drug giant Johnson & Johnson. No surprise, then, that the health insurance industry and the drug industry tag team are projecting huge profits from the ACA.

Recent poll numbers show rampant public displeasure with Obamacare. Will Congress pass Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu’s sensible solution, the Keeping the Affordable Care Act Promise Act? Or will we have to wait until next year’s congressional elections for that outrage to register?

James Rauch

Eggertsville