Quantcast
Connect with us

‘Fanatical cruelty’: As pandemic rages, Trump refuses to reopen Affordable Care Act enrollment to help uninsured

Published

on

As millions of people across the United States lose their jobs—and their employer-provided health insurance—amid the coronavirus pandemic, President Donald Trump has reportedly decided against reopening Affordable Care Act enrollment to ease the economic pain of the uninsured and help protect them from devastating medical costs.

An anonymous White House official told Politico Tuesday night that the Trump administration will not reopen HealthCare.gov for a special enrollment period as the U.S. battles the COVID-19 outbreak, disregarding urgent pleas from a diverse array of advocacy groups (pdf) and more than 100 members of Congress (pdf). The White House is “exploring other options,” the official said without elaborating.

ADVERTISEMENT

“The people living in the 38 states that use HealthCare.gov will likely remain uninsured, leaving them potentially exposed to tens of thousands of dollars in costs if they get sick from the novel coronavirus and need medical treatment.”
—Jeff Young, HuffPost

“This isn’t just an outrageous decision, but it’s also a deadly one,” said Rep. Veronica Escobar (D-Texas.). “Moments ago, Donald Trump announced we should expect 100-200k deaths in the U.S. For those without health insurance, this is fatal. It’s time to end this senseless war on healthcare.”

The annual ACA enrollment period ended in December, though some are still eligible for special enrollment despite the Trump administration’s tireless efforts to restrict eligibility.

While around a dozen states that run their own ACA exchanges have reopened enrollment, most states rely on the federal marketplace directed by the Trump administration, which is currently backing a Republican lawsuit that, if successful, would overturn the ACA and throw tens of millions more off their insurance.

“In the middle a pandemic that could kill hundreds of thousands, Trump and his toadies are deliberately blocking Americans from buying healthcare,” tweeted Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-N.Y.). “Theirs is fanatical cruelty that will kill people.”

ADVERTISEMENT

As HuffPost‘s Jeff Young wrote late Tuesday, “the negative consequences of this active refusal to offer help to vulnerable Americans are obvious”:

The people living in the 38 states that use HealthCare.gov—and those in Idaho, which hasn’t reactivated its state-run exchange—will likely remain uninsured, leaving them potentially exposed to tens of thousands of dollars in costs if they get sick from the novel coronavirus and need medical treatment.

Moreover, the high cost of healthcare frequently discourages Americans from seeking care, especially those who are among the 28 million uninsured. And sick people not being isolated and treated means they are at risk of spreading the coronavirus to more people.

Progressives have argued repeatedly in recent weeks that the spread of the novel coronavirus and the resulting economic collapse have exposed the cruelty of a for-profit healthcare system that ties insurance to employment and essential care to one’s ability to shoulder the often exorbitant costs. Medicare for All, advocates say, is the only humane and reasonable solution to the crisis in the long-term.

ADVERTISEMENT

In the meantime, progressive lawmakers and activists have demanded that all coronavirus testing, treatment, and potential cures by made free and available for everyone in the United States.

As Common Dreams reported Monday, an analysis by Covered California found that insurance companies could raise premiums by more than 40% next year, which would put already expensive healthcare entirely out of reach for millions of people.

ADVERTISEMENT

“Corporate-run health insurance isn’t about saving lives,” tweeted Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), a 2020 Democratic presidential candidate. “It’s about making as much money as possible. With Medicare for All we can finally put an end to this international disgrace.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

Trump ridiculed for his late-night ‘OPEN THE SCHOOLS’ rant: ‘Eat your Big Mac and shut up’

Published

on

President Donald Trump demanded local school boards reopen schools during a late night tweet sent after 11 p.m. on Monday.

"OPEN THE SCHOOLS!!!" Trump demanded, in all capital letters with three exclamation marks.

The president was harshly criticized for his tweet, here's some of what people were saying:

Dear Stupid,

You can't even get your own son's school to open.

They have refused.

The school where your son Barron is being educated refuses to open because it's not safe.

Now sit there, eat your Big Mac, and shut up.

Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

Florida Democrats ask their own candidate to withdraw his candidacy after cocaine arrest: report

Published

on

Democrats in Florida are asking their own candidate to end his campaign for county commission after an arrest for DUI and cocaine.

"A Collier County commission candidate's arrest in East Naples this past weekend has prompted calls from his party to drop out of the race," the Naples Daily News reported Monday. "John Jenkins, 55, was booked into the Naples Jail Center Sunday morning and faces a felony charge of possession of cocaine, according to a Collier County Sheriff's Office arrest report. He was released later that day on $5,000 bond."

Continue Reading
 

Breaking Banner

Harvard researchers want less accurate tests for COVID-19

Published

on

The aphorism "perfect is the enemy of good enough" has been played out to tragic effect in the US's inadequate testing for the coronavirus, according to researchers calling for quick tests that cost only about a dollar each, and which may not be as accurate but can be carried out several times a week by the whole population.

Michael Mina, assistant professor of epidemiology at Harvard University, has for weeks been pushing for what he calls "crappy" tests.

His idea is to move away from the current high-precision molecular tests, known as PCR tests, which are still scarce in large swathes of the country and which people often have to wait hours to get done, and then have to wait days -- or up to a week -- for the results.

Continue Reading
 
 
You need honest news coverage. Help us deliver it. Join Raw Story Investigates for $1. Go ad-free.
close-image