Obamacare: How do you feel about a national identity card and giving the federal government access to your employment, financial and health records?
Are you prepared to have your medical records turned over to the federal government by private health insurers?
To be accessed by local, state and federal entities to administer existing laws – and exposing your personal data to unionized government workers and hyper-partisan or curious healthcare workers without procedural safeguards and still legal penalties for planned or accidental release of an individual’s medical data?
It is not so much that I care that my medical records are used to provide me with superior medical care, but that the same records can be used for denying or pricing other insurance products or influence employment decisions. Or for blackmailing or coercing individuals who have something that they do not want make public. And perhaps being used by hyper-partisans or union-members to influence political actions.
The legislators were derelict in their duty …
If you remember, the 2000+ page outline of what was to become ObamaCare was released to legislators at the last minute and there was no physical way that legislators could read and understand the legislation they were voting on.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi actually stood before the cameras and declared
“But we have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it."
Thus a strong prima facie case can be made for dereliction of duty or malfeasance while in office.
Nobody knew the totality of the medical, financial and political implications of the bill when it was signed …
In reality, the bill, written in dense and incomprehensible bureaucratic legalese, mandated that the Secretary of Health and Human Services had the duty to implement the new legislation; creating boards, commissions, rules, regulations and guidelines.
Of course, we have come to learn that the legislation may actually be unconstitutional because it mandates that all citizens must purchase a product from a non-governmental (private) corporation or face penalties. The compliance portion of the law being policed by the Internal Revenue Service.
National Identity Card and Medical Records Database …
In addition, the legislation requires the creation of a national identification card to receive healthcare and a database which will contain details regarding the eligibility, medical, behavioral and financial affairs of all citizens – and probably non-citizen illegal aliens.
From a Request for Comments by September 28, 2011 as published in the Federal Register …
SUMMARY: This proposed rule would implement standards for States related to reinsurance and risk adjustment, and for health insurance issuers related to reinsurance, risk corridors, and risk adjustment consistent with title I of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act as amended by the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010, referred to collectively as the Affordable Care Act.
These programs will mitigate the impact of potential adverse selection and stabilize premiums in the
The transitional State-based reinsurance program serves to reduce the uncertainty of insurance risk in the individual market by making payments for high-cost cases. The temporary Federally-administered risk corridor program serves to protect against
On an ongoing basis, the State-based risk adjustment program is intended to provide adequate payments to health insurance issuers that attract high-risk
To see the process of creating this database, let us review how the database will be populated …
5. Data Collection Under Risk Adjustment (§ 153.340)
As described above, a robust risk adjustment process requires data to support the determination of an individual’s risk score and the corresponding plan and State averages.
In paragraph (a) we propose that a State or HHS on behalf of the State, is responsible for collecting the data for use in determining individual risk scores.
HHS considered three possibilities for data collection:
(1) A centralized approach in which issuers submit raw claims data sets to HHS;
(2) an intermediate State-level approach in which issuers submit raw claims data sets to the State government, or the entity responsible for administering the risk adjustment process at the State
(3) a distributed approach in which each issuer must reformat its own data to map correctly to the risk
This approach is analogous to telling a child that they can choose to go to bed NOW or WAIT five minutes. In either case, the child goes to bed within the parent’s chosen time period.
Likewise, no matter which option is chosen, your medical records will be forwarded to the federal government where they will be analyzed and used to determine “cost effective best practices.” The results of this research will be used to insert a bureaucrat between the doctor and their patient which would tell the doctor that your care was to be denied or delayed … or in worst case, counseled on “end of life” choices.
Cost Effective Best Practices don’t always work …
The human body is a complex of individual and overlapping systems and what works for one person many not work for another. I illustrated this statistical fact of life with a chart in a previous blog entry.
Are you willing to take the chance that your treatment is one of the uncovered outliers that is either too expensive or not effective for the majority cases. Thus curtailing your doctor’s ability to use “experimental” cures or treatments not specifically approved by the Federal Drug Administration or the bureaucrats? Like the breast cancer drug which has been effective for some women, but not all women.
An inherent conflict of interest?
How can you trust any government entity when they have been incentivized to cut back on entitlement costs, especially to relatively non-productive (in a labor sense) senior citizens nearing the end of their lives? Where cutting back on medical treatment also has a beneficial effect on further Medicare and social security costs?
Privacy, Yeah Right?
How many people remember when a contractor to Health and Human Services lost a laptop containing medical information relating to 50,000 Medicare beneficiaries. Or the government employee whose laptop was stolen from his home – and contained information on 26,500 veterans, spouses and dependents.
For more bad news directly from the source, you can see data breaches involving hundreds of thousands of people at the Health and Human Services website: Breaches Affecting 500 or More Individuals
Competition Killer …
There is little or no doubt in my mind that the government wanted to implement a “one payor” solution where the government was actually your healthcare provider and the actual administration was outsourced to insurance companies and “approved” physicians and facilities.
Since the pricing and proprietary operations of private insurance companies would be exposed to competitors, competition is likely to be stifled rather than encouraged.
A question of power …
By ceding their lawmaking responsibilities and spelling out how things should work, Congress has, once again, empowered the executive branch to usurp its authority. In essence allowing the Administration to create additional power without constitutional authority.
Bottom line …
The worst part of ObamaCare is the ineptitude of the government. Simply put, they cannot how they are going to add millions of new patients to the system without a corresponding increase in physicians, facilities, diagnostic devices, durable medical equipment and other critical infrastructure; especially in view of reducing reimbursements for physicians, facilities and supplies.
This is another example of the institutional violation of patient-doctor confidentiality and an unwarranted intrusion into the personal affairs of all Americans.
There is no action that cannot be justified on the grounds of healthcare, from gun control which subverts the Second Amendment, to the violation of the Tenth Amendment by coercing states into performing activities which would be unconstitutional at the federal level simply by withholding taxpayer funds.
We need to elect honest brokers to serve “We the People.” We need to throw out the bums and miscreants who are in the process of destroying what is the world’s best healthcare system to amass political power and control over individuals at their most vulnerable moment – when they are sick or dying. It is bad enough that the state grabs the fruits of your hard labor and prevents it being passed down to your heirs – now they want to hasten the death in death taxes.
“Nullius in verba.”-- take nobody's word for it!
“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw
“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”
“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS "The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius “A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell “Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar “Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS
“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS
"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius
“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell
“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar
“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS