Kudos to LWVLAMV members Sue Graham, Cathy Lazarus, Ginny Lear and the LWVSCC President’s Council for an outstanding talk last night on the Affordable Care Act in Palo Alto. Speaker Bob Bernstein, Director of Policy and Research at Working USA, did an excellent job of organizing and summarizing key points, giving us a few, broad brush criteria for a health care system and linking what ACA will provide to those criteria. He definitely kept the audience out of the weeds, which was a good thing in explaining a complex law.
Browstein said the key planks of the ACA legislation in California are 1) the exchanges or marketplaces which cannot refuse people with pre-existing conditions, 2) the mandate which prods healthy people to buy insurance, avoiding adverse selection and 3) creating efficiencies in medical care delivery that will bend and flatten the long-term cost curve. He took numerous questions from the audience including how to help the homeless apply and how the act affects various Medicare supplemental plans.