Not only has Trump being the president-elect ruined my respect for the presidency but the scheming that is going on in Washington is starting to not sit well with me. Mental illness is as serious as physical illnesses and should not be swept under the rug and treated like a silly misinformed child.
Republicans are chomping at the bits to take over and repeal Obamacare also known as the Affordable Care Act. If they do this, they will be taking away health care from over 20 million Americans. The sleeper cell in the Affordable Care Act is how well it’s done to improve mental health coverage in America. But before we praise the Affordable Care Act lets reminisce.
The road to better mental health coverage has always been a tough one. In 2013, someone with bipolar disorder was unable to get individual health insurance in most states. For people that had insurance, only 61 percent of those insurances covered mental health treatment. Most mental illness disorders emerge during adolescence or people in their early 20’s. Back in 2010, a commonwealth fund analysis found that a little over 31 percent of people age 18-24 didn’t have health care. How are we supposed to fix a problem when people can’t even afford or have access to mental health coverage?
One in five American adults will experience a mental health issue at some point, but historically, millions have not gotten the care they needed due to the challenges of the health insurance market. (Source: healthinsurance.org) ACA has done a lot but here are the big important factors:
ACA has done a lot but here are the big important factors:
- Require that all health care plans cover mental health (including individual and small employers)
- Require that most health insurances cover preventatives at no extra cost.
- Prohibiting insurance companies from denying coverage to those with preexisting conditions.
- Helped young adults stay on their parent’s insurance until age 26.
It has been a great step in the right direction for helping those who suffer from mental illnesses.
It’s hard to say what will actually happen if Obamacare is repealed. It depends on how health insurance companies deal with the world where Obamacare isn’t around. Especially if Republicans try to replace it with their own bright idea the insurance companies will have to find a way to adapt. What the most sickening part of this all is House Speaker Paul Ryan’s 37-page health care proposal doesn’t even mention words mental illness once in it. 37 pages and not one mention of something that is drastically important!
It is a sad look at our next four-year future. We can do better.