It is becoming clear as the healthcare measure takes effect that many of the president's promises made during the campaign for the law are being broken.
During President Obama’s many speeches advocating his healthcare proposal, he constantly assured the American people that those who were happy with their health insurance plans would be permitted to keep them. He also promised that they would be allowed to keep their physicians if they wished.
“No matter how we reform health care,” Obama declared in 2009, “we will keep this promise: if you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor. Period.”
An increasing number of Americans are chagrined to learn, however, that it is not as simple as that.
Time.com reported, “In order to participate in health-insurance exchanges, insurers needed to find a way to tamp down the high costs of premiums. As a result, many will narrow their networks, shrinking the range of doctors that are available to patients under their plan, experts say.”
In fact, experts indicate that this is a consequence that the president and those who wrote the law should have been able to foresee.
“Many people are going to find out that the second part of the promise — that if you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor — just wasn’t true,” asserted Gail Wilensky, who directed the federal Medicare and Medicaid programs under President George H.W. Bush.
According to Wilensky, Obama’s health care advisers, supposedly experts in the field, should have known that some people would need to change doctors. “This is not magic stuff,” she noted.
Likewise, Factcheck.org labelled the president’s promise “misleading,” indicating that while the law does not specify that people would need to pick a new doctor, there is an implicit understanding that a switch may be inevitable for some. “The President simply can’t make this promise to anyone,” the site said.
Time.com observed that shortly after the healthcare law was passed, the Obama administration stopped promising that Americans would be able to keep their physicians.
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