Oh, Arkansas state government officials! I suppose we must credit you for your commitment, given how unflagging you have been in your efforts to shove Obamacare down our throats.
Latest exhibit: Monday’s state-sponsored forum (“Health Care Reform: A New Hope”) at Arkansas Children’s Hospital in Little Rock, hosted by the state Surgeon General Joe Thompson and the Arkansas Center for Health Improvement.
The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette’s Sarah Wire was on hand to chronicle the proceedings (subscription required), in which these trusted officials detailed their visions for Our Bright New Future:
The [Affordable Care Act] ushers in changes to health insurance and health care, banning the denial of coverage because of pre-existing conditions, providing tax credits for low-income people to buy insurance, requiring online pools where people can shop for health insurance, among other things.
“It’s important to bring everybody along and have people see how interconnected things are and how much we need to move the whole system into the 21st century. We can’t let any piece of it lag,” Thompson said. “We’ve got to make sure that people not only have an insurance card, we have to make sure that there are providers … to give them the care that they need, and the payment system is aligned to get the outcomes that we want.”
Marvelously rendered telling ironic detail: The forum was slated to be simulcast at 15 other locations, Wire reports, but they couldn’t make it happen due to “technical difficulties.” I am never more reassured than when I read about government officials boasting of their grand plans for solving the most complex and abiding problems that plague our world, only to read in the very next graf that they are completely stymied by the most basic technological logistics. There is no bad news!
Oh, except when there is: When you finish reading the ADG report on yesterday’s forum, go read this piece in The Hill, which reports that states that are setting up health-care exchanges are already looking to assign blame for complaints and shortfalls to the federal government:
State officials are pushing back hard against what they view as shortcomings in the healthcare reform law for fear they’ll be barraged with complaints when people have trouble affording insurance.
Federal regulators are writing the rules governing key aspects of the law, including the guidelines to determine who’s eligible for subsidies to buy private insurance.
Those benefits will be delivered through state-based exchanges, however, leaving state officials on the receiving end of angry phone calls if glitches in the law aren’t ironed out by 2014.
I’m sure it will all be smoothed out soon enough, though. There is no bad news!
Meanwhile, a federal appeals court has upheld the individual mandate in Obamacare. You know what this means, don’t you? Don’t you? I was really hoping you did so you might be able to explain it to me.