One of the basic principles espoused by the AHA is "Health Coverage For All, Paid For By All" -- a very collectivist slogan reminiscent of the Marxist dictum, "To each according to his need, from each according to his ability."
To accomplish this goal, the AHA advocates the following:
Every individual must have and contribute to the cost of health care coverageThese goals will dovetail nicely with what we know about President-elect Obama's health care plan, which includes the following:
Every employer must take responsibility for providing health care coverage for their employees and contribute to the cost
Every insurer must guarantee access to coverage that is affordable, gives consumers the protection they need, and delivers value
Governments must maintain their current responsibility forcoverage for seniors, disabled and certain low income people
Collective financing will be needed
Mandated insurance for childrenThe Obama plan has many similarities to the ill-fated Massachusetts plan, except for not imposing an individual insurance mandate on everyone. Massaschusetts imposes this mandate on all adults, whereas Obama's plan would only impose it on children. For more on the problems in Massachusetts, see some of our earlier posts.
State subsidies for those families who don't qualify for other government programs (such as Medicaid or SCHIP)
Mandates on employers to provide a "meaningful share" of employees health insurance premiums (or else pay a special fee to the government for the government plan)
Expansion of SCHIP and Medicaid government programs, "for the children"
Creating a National Health Insurance Exchange to serve as a clearinghouse where people could purchase government-approved plans
New restrictions on insurers so that they could not exclude applicants based on pre-existing conditions
We'll be hearing much more about both the AHA proposals and the Obama plan in the near future. For now, I just wanted to alert FIRM readers that these issues may be arising at both the state and national levels here in Colorado.