While I agree the health care system certainly needs to be revamped, I don't believe the method they came up with is the best way to go about doing so.
Why make it so damn complicated ? Four levels of plans, different levels of coverage / premiums, availability determined by regional areas, IRS involvement, etc.
There are more than a few countries who already have national health care systems in place ( France and Canada right off the top of my head ) so why would we try to reinvent the wheel here when systems already exist ( and have for many, many years ) that work ? I would rather pay a slightly higher Federal Tax and be totally covered than deal with the debacle that we now have. I know they were trying their best to get folks to believe that this wasn't a new " tax ", but only the naive still believe that. Hell, even the Supreme Court allowed it to stand because:
"The Affordable Care Act's requirement that certain individuals pay a financial penalty for not obtaining health insurance may reasonably be characterized as a tax," Chief Justice John Roberts wrote in the ruling. "Because the Constitution permits such a tax, it is not our role to forbid it, or to pass upon its wisdom or fairness."
So, now that the cat is out of the bag and it's officially a tax, just raise the overall Tax on everyone to pay for it already. Would be far easier than the debacle we now have.
I don't see where the current implementation is going to do much good. When, in the entire HISTORY of the United States Government, has ANYTHING ever came in at or under budget projections ? Ever ? Anyone ? So when this monstrosity does what I think it will, what do you think the premium prices are going to do ? ( Hint, they're not going to go down and guess whose pocket it will be coming out of )
Another thought I've had is the coverage itself is woefully inadequate without one other "fix" in place.
Years ago I had a family member who had a heart bypass performed. He was in the hospital for about a month. When it was all said and done, the bill came in and checked in at just shy of HALF A MILLION DOLLARS.
Assume the health plan picks up a generous 75% of that bill. That leaves us with roughly $125k. Annual limit out of pocket expenses are $6k. So the remaining $119k the hospital is going to harass you for -eternity- to get because when you get admitted to the hospital, you sign a form that agrees YOU will pick up any costs the insurance doesn't cover. If you don't sign it, you don't get admitted. Failure to pay it will result in debt collectors, phone calls, letters, threats of litigation, etc. etc.
Does anyone really think that folks who are utilizing last resort government health care plans can EVER pay off a debt like that ? Hell, can you ?
And should you ? This is the real fix that needs to happen. Health care industry pricing is the ENTIRE reason we even have to HAVE insurance to begin with. No one can possibly afford the prices they charge without insurance. ( You 1% types don't count ) It's just insanity. Anyone who has ever looked at their hospital bill will agree. ( Really ? $5 for a Q-Tip ? )
So the easier fix for this is two-fold:
1) One plan that covers everything for everyone paid for by an increase in the Federal Tax and
2) The regulation of the health care industries out of control price gouging.
Hell, maybe we can help pay for this with some of the NSA's budget :D Punishment for their questionable behavior as of late. If we quit playing World Policeman, we could also cut our defense budget in HALF and use that to help pay for this thing. ( Hint, it's how the other countries pay for theirs. They don't have the largest defense budget on the planet :D )