Health Care Reform – Busting The 3 Biggest Myths Of ObamaCare

In the last few months we’ve seen a lot of Health Care Reform rules and regulations being introduced by the Health and Human Services Department. Every time that happens, the media gets hold of it and all kinds of articles are written in the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, and the TV network news programs talk about it. All the analysts start talking about the pros and cons, and what it means to businesses and individuals.

The problem with this is, many times one writer looked at the regulation, and wrote a piece about it. Then other writers start using pieces from that first article and rewriting parts to fit their article. By the time the information gets widely distributed, the actual regulations and rules get twisted and distorted, and what actually shows up in the media sometimes just doesn’t truly represent the reality of what the regulations say.

There’s a lot of misunderstanding about what is going on with ObamaCare, and one of the things that I’ve noticed in discussions with clients, is that there’s an underlying set of myths that people have picked up about health care reform that just aren’t true. But because of all they’ve heard in the media, people believe these myths are actually true.

Today we’re going to talk about three myths I hear most commonly. Not everybody believes these myths, but enough do, and others are unsure what to believe, so it warrants dispelling these myths now.

The first one is that health care reform only affects uninsured people. The second one is that Medicare benefits and the Medicare program isn’t going to be affected by health care reform. And then the last one is that health care reform is going to reduce the costs of healthcare.

Health Care Reform Only Affects Uninsured

Let’s look at the first myth about health care reform only affecting uninsured people. In a lot of the discussions I have with clients, there are several expressions they use: “I already have coverage, so I won’t be affected by ObamaCare,” or “I’ll just keep my grandfathered health insurance plan,” and the last one – and this one I can give them a little bit of leeway, because part of what they’re saying is true — is “I have group health insurance, so I won’t be affected by health care reform.”

Well, the reality is that health care reform is actually going to affect everybody. Starting in 2014, we’re going to have a whole new set of health plans, and those plans have very rich benefits with lots of extra features that the existing plans today don’t offer. So these new plans are going to be higher cost.

Health Care Reform’s Effect On People With Health Insurance

People that currently have health insurance are going to be transitioned into these new plans sometime in 2014. So the insured will be directly affected by this because the health plans they have today are going away, and they will be mapped into a new ObamaCare plan in 2014.

Health Care Reform Effect On The Uninsured

The uninsured have an additional issue in that if they don’t get health insurance in 2014, they face a mandate penalty. Some of the healthy uninsured are going to look at that penalty and say, “Well, the penalty is 1% of my adjusted gross income; I make $50,000, so I’ll pay a $500 penalty or $1,000 for health insurance. In that case I’ll just take the penalty.” But either way, they will be directly affected by health care reform. Through the mandate it affects the insured as well as the uninsured.

Health Care Reform Effect On People With Grandfathered Health Plans

People that have grandfathered health insurance plans are not going to be directly affected by health care reform. But because of the life cycle of their grandfathered health plan, it’s going to make those plans more costly as they discover that there are plans available now that they can easily transfer to that have a richer set of benefits that would be more beneficial for any chronic health issues they may have.

For people who stay in those grandfathered plans, the pool of subscribers in the plan are going to start to shrink, and as that happens, the cost of those grandfathered health insurance plans will increase even faster than they are now. Therefore, people in grandfathered health plans will also be impacted by ObamaCare.

Health Care Reform Effect On People With Group Health Insurance

The last one, the small group marketplace, is going to be the most notably affected by health care reform. Even though the health care reform regulations predominantly affect large and medium-sized companies, and companies that have 50 or more employees, smaller companies will also be affected, even though they’re exempt from ObamaCare itself.

What many surveys and polls are starting to show is that some of the businesses that have 10 or fewer employees are going to look seriously at their option to drop health insurance coverage altogether, and no longer have it as an expense of the company. Instead, they will have their employees get health insurance through the health insurance exchanges.

In fact, some of the carriers are now saying they anticipate that up to 50% of small groups with 10 or fewer employees are going to drop their health insurance plan sometime between 2014 and 2016. That will have a very large effect on all people who have group health insurance, especially if they’re in one of those small companies that drop health insurance coverage.

It’s not just uninsured that are going to be affected by health care reform, everybody is going to be impacted.

Health Care Reform Will Not Affect Medicare

The next myth was that health care reform would not affect Medicare. This one is kind of funny because right from the very get-go, the most notable cuts were specifically targeting the Medicare program. When you look at Medicare’s portion of the overall federal, you can see that in 1970, Medicare was 4% of the U.S. federal budget, and by 2011, it had grown to 16% of the federal budget.

If we look at it over the last 10 years, from 2002 to 2012, Medicare is the fastest growing part of the major entitlement programs in the federal government, and it’s grown by almost 70% during that period of time.

Because of how large Medicare is and how fast it’s growing, it’s one of the key programs that ObamaCare is trying to get a handle on, so it doesn’t bankrupts the U.S. Medicare is going to be impacted, and in fact the initial cuts to Medicare have already been set at about $716 billion.

Medicare Advantage Cuts And The Effects

Of that $716 billion cut, the Medicare Advantage program gets cut the most, and will see the bulk of the effects. What that’s going to do is increase the premiums people pay for their Medicare Advantage plans, and reduce the benefits of those plans.

Increased Medicare Advantage Costs

Right now, many people choose Medicare Advantage plans because they have zero premium. When given a choice on Medicare plans, they view it as an easy choice because it’s a free program for them, “Sure, I get Medicare benefits, I don’t pay anything for it; why not.” Now they’re going to see Medicare premiums start to climb, and go from zero to $70, $80, $90, $100. We’ve already seen that with some of the Blue Cross Medicare Advantage plans this year. It’s going to get worse as we go forward in the future.

Reduced Medicare Advantage Benefits

In order to minimize the premium increases, what many Medicare Advantage plans will do is increase the copayments, increase the deductibles, and change the co-insurance rates. In order to keep the premiums down, they’ll just push more of the costs onto the Medicare Advantage recipients. Increased premiums and reduced benefits are what we’re going to see coming in Medicare Advantage plan.

Fewer Medicare Physicians

And then if that wasn’t bad enough, as Medicare doctors begin receiving lower and lower reimbursements for Medicare Advantage people, they’re going to stop taking new Medicare Advantage recipients. We’re going to see the pool of doctors to support people in Medicare starting to shrink as well, unless changes are made over the course of the next five years. So Medicare is going to be affected, and it’s going to be affected dramatically by health care reform. Everybody’s kind of on pins and needles, waiting to see what’s going to happen there.

Health Care Reform Will Reduce Healthcare Costs

The last one, and probably the biggest myth about health care reform, is everybody thinking that ObamaCare will reduce healthcare costs. That’s completely hogwash. Early on in the process, when they were trying to come up with the rules and regulations, the emphasis and one of the goals for reform was to reduce healthcare costs.

But somewhere along the line, the goal actually shifted from cost reduction to regulation of the health insurance industry. Once they made that transition, they pushed cost reductions to the back burner. There are some small cost reduction components in ObamaCare, but the real emphasis is on regulating health insurance. The new plans, for example, have much richer benefits than many plans today: richer benefits means richer prices.

Health Care Reform Subsidies: Will They Make Plans Affordable?

A lot of people hope, “The subsidies are going to make health insurance plans more affordable, won’t they?” Yes, in some cases the subsidies will help to make the plans affordable for people. But if you make $1 too much, the affordable plans are suddenly going to become very expensive and can cost thousands of dollars more over the course of a year. Will a subsidy make it affordable or not affordable is really subject to debate at this point in time. We’re going to have to actually see what the rates look like for these plans.

New Health Care Reform Taxes Passed On To Consumers

Then there’s a whole ton of new health care reform taxes that have been added into the system to help pay for ObamaCare. That means everybody who has a health insurance plan, whether it’s in a large group, a small group, or just as an individual, is going to be taxed in order to pay for the cost of reform. Health care reform adds various taxes on health care that insurance companies will have to collect and pay, but they’re just going to pass it right through to us, the consumer.

Mandate Won’t Reduce Uninsured Very Much

During the initial years of health care reform, the mandate is actually pretty weak. The mandate says that everyone must get health insurance or pay a penalty (a tax). What that’s going to do is make healthy people just sit on the sidelines and wait for the mandate to get to the point where it finally forces them to buy health insurance. People with chronic health conditions that couldn’t get health insurance previously, are all going to jump into healthcare at the beginning of 2014.

At the end of that year, the cost for the plans is going to go up in 2015. I can guarantee that that’s going to happen, because the young healthy people are not going to be motivated to get into the plans. They won’t see the benefit of joining an expensive plan, whereas the chronically ill people are going to get into the plans and drive the costs up.

Health Care Reform’s Purpose Is Just A Matter Of Semantics

The last portion of this is, one of the key things – and it’s funny, I saw it for the first two years, 2010, and ’11 – one of the key things that was listed in the documentation from the Obama administration was: Health Care Reform would help reduce the cost that we would see in the future if we do nothing today. That was emphasized over and over again. That was how they presented health care cost reduction, that it would reduce the future costs. Not today, but it would reduce what we would pay in the future if we did nothing about it now.

Well, that’s great, 10 years from now we’re going to pay less than we might have paid. And we all know how accurate future projections usually are. In the meantime, we’re all paying more today, and we’re going to pay even more in 2014 and more in 2015 and 2016. People are going to be pretty upset about that.

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Diet And Exercising For Weight Loss

Obesity is now being called an epidemic in the health community. In fact, it will soon be the leading cause of preventable death in the United States, even ahead of cigarette smoking. Obesity leads to type two diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease or stroke and even an increased risk of cancer. With all of these health risks, as well as the general improvement in the quality of life that can occur, losing weight is one of the best things that you can do for yourself.

No matter what we would like to believe, there simply isn’t a magic solution to losing weight. The body will shed excess fat when it needs more calories to function through the demands you place on it in a given day than the amount of calories that you feed it. It’s that simple. So, in order to lose weight, you need to decrease the number of calories that you eat as well as increase the amount that you burn.

There is a wide range of options to choose from when looking for a weight loss program. All of them often spend a lot of time explaining what to eat, in what amounts and even at what times or in what combinations. But few of them emphasize the importance of exercise – not just for losing weight, but for your general health and wellbeing. Exercise is vital when trying to lose weight for several reasons:

First, as you start to eat less, your metabolism will slow down somewhat. Exercising helps to elevate your metabolism back to an efficient level.Second, as mentioned, exercise burns more calories so that you can lose weight faster and stay motivated in your efforts.Third, exercise actually releases endorphins, chemicals that keep your mood elevated.

Exercise doesn’t have to mean spending hours at the gym or straining through exhausting workouts. In fact, in order for you to stick with it on the long run, exercising should be something that you enjoy. Start by increasing your activity level in an overall way. Take the stairs when you can. Park further from the mall door when you go shopping. Go for a walk in the park or through a neighborhood you love and bring a dog or a friend along for company. Take dance or martial arts lessons.

Once you become more active in general, you’ll find it easier and more natural to move into regular exercise. Which you’ll need to do eventually in order to get regular, noticeable health benefits. You need to raise your heart rate to a fat burning level and keep it there for at least 20 minutes, 3 times or more a week. However, if you don’t want to go to a gym, there are other options. Videos and DVDs are now available in all kinds of exercise types. That way you can change your routine whenever you want so that you don’t get bored with what you’re doing. Try a range of aerobics, kickboxing, yoga, or pretty much any activity you want right in the comfort of your own home.

If you have physical limitations that would keep you off from exercising, you can still find a way to increase your activity level. Water aerobics is a wonderful option for those who have joint problems or limited mobility because it relieves the pressure on your body that your weight provides. But you still get the resistance to challenge your muscles from the water. There are even classes and videos available that let you exercise in a seated position.

Whatever kind of exercise you choose, it’s important to stay motivated and keep it fun. Try gathering a group together to make it a social event. Or get a pedometer, a device that tracks how far you walk, and see how many miles you can walk a week. Make a competition amongst your friends or family members and treat the winner with something special (not food related!). Make the experience of exercising something that you look forward to, and it will soon become a regular part of your healthier lifestyle.

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The Best Treatment For Acne Vulgaris Tca Skin Peels Used By Plastic Surgeons Everywhere

Acne vulgaris (acne) is a condition, popular with teens and young adults, that is characterized by red, inflamed bumps and patches. These bumps and patches are formed by overactive sebacious glands (usually due to hormonal imbalances), high skin pH, oil, and basteria that thrive in these conditions. This acne can be worsened by summer heat, improper cleaning, itching and picking at the bumps (they are not pimples and will only get worse when picked at), pH imbalance, bad nutrition, etc…

By changing our habits we can improve this condition. Using mild soaps and cleansers will prove less irritating. Eating a well balanced diet will average out the condition and slowly improve it. And we all know not to pick at acne postules and bumps, but to stop it and possibly cure it we have to get to the source deep in the skin.

Surface treatments like benzoyl peroxide creams and solutions are at best minimally effective and can further irritate the condition. We need to get several layers down to the source, the bacteria, inflamation, and the sebacious glands where acne forms.

Plastic surgeons know that glycolic and salicylic peels are better than hydrogen peroxide treatments, but they will not reach the source. This is where plastic surceons and doctors use TCA peels (trichloroacetic acid) which is a deeper peel to reach the source, change the skin pH (which kills off the bacteria – they cannot survive in high acidity conditions), and increase skin regeneration by sloughing off several layers. TCA peels have been clinically prove to treat and cure acne better than any other treatment (including lasers and Accutane) without any of the horrible side effects).

TCA peels used to be something only the wealthy could afford, but not anymore. You can still go to your doctor and pay $500+ or you can do it yourself. TCA peels are the easiest, safest, and most effective of all the skin peels and are now easily available. For more details about TCA peels contact the author below or look it up on the internet. Get a TCA peel and start enjoying cleaner, more youthful skin and stop wasting your money on products that don’t work.

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Skin Cancer Prevention 5 Ways To Protect Yourself From Uv Rays

Skin cancer prevention measures can actively reduce your chances of developing skin cancer if you implement them in your daily routine. The most common form of cancer in the United States, tens of thousands of Americans contract skin cancer every year.

Skin cancer comes in three forms: basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and malignant melanoma. Of the three, melanoma is the most dangerous and life threatening. Skin cancer claims the lives of approximately ten thousand Americans on an annual basis.

What causes skin cancer?

Overexposure to ultraviolet sunlight (UV rays) is believed to be the dominant external factor in a person’s development of skin cancer, although genetic factors can play a role. To protect yourself from UV rays, you should take the following 5 steps for proper skin cancer prevention:

1. Avoid Direct Sun Exposure: Avoid exposing your skin to direct sunlight during midday (generally from 10am to 4pm). This is the time when UV rays are most intense. Plan your schedule to avoid outdoor activities during these hours. Also, be aware that sand and snow reflect sunlight, so if you’re at the beach or a ski resort, direct sunlight can bombard you from every direction with UV rays.

2. Cover Yourself: When out in the sun, keep your skin covered. Wear long-sleeves and long pants if possible. Wearing a hat with a 3 to 4 inch brim all around is preferable. This will guard your neck and cheeks from dangerous prolonged exposure. Also note that dry, dark-colored garments offer the best protection.

3. Use Sunscreen Properly: You should always use sunscreen when enduring prolonged exposure in the sun. Find a sunscreen with a Sun Protection Factor of at least 15 and read the directions for proper application. The higher the SPF, the higher the protection you will receive against dangerous sunburns. However, sunscreen does not offer “bulletproof” protection, and UV rays can penetrate water, so just because you feel “cool” in the water doesn’t mean you’re protected from sunburn.

4. Use Sunglasses That Block UV Rays: Making certain your sunglasses can block UV rays helps to guard your eyes from serious sun damage. The best constructed sunglasses should have a UV ray absorption rate of 99% to 100%. Never assume that darker lenses equal increased protection. UV rays are blocked by a chemical applied to the lenses. This chemical has nothing to do with the color of transparency of sunglass lenses.

5. Stay Away From Tanning Beds: It is a myth to believe that tanning beds and sunlamps are free of harmful UV rays. These cosmetic instruments might make your skin more attractive in the short-term, but they can significantly increase your risk of developing skin cancer in the long-term. Health professionals advise their patients to avoid them.

By implementing these 5 steps in your daily routine, you can significantly decrease your risk of developing skin cancer, while maintaining a healthy lifestyle that allows for proper exposure to the sun. Another important step in prevention of skin cancer is routine examination by a doctor. If skin cancer is detected early, then your odds of survival are markedly increased.

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Diabetes Cause And Prevention

An individual may get diabetes when the pancreas can no longer secrete the needed hormones that produce insulin. The insulin maintains the glucose in the blood to be normal. Low insulin means that the level of glucose, which is sugar in the blood, may get high and may lead to diabetes.

The autoimmune reaction is a type 1 diabetes where the cells in the pancreas organ that produces the needed insulin are destroyed. This results to the total loss of insulin in the hormones. This happens because the body has its own hormones that protects and destroys its own pancreas cells.

Although there is no scientific proof why this occurrence in the pancreas happens, some studies have some theories that may possibly be related in this kind of reaction. Some say that this happens when there is exposure of a newly born to a cow’s milk, the infection from viruses and bacteria, and the exposure from food-borne chemical toxins. There is not enough evidence yet to prove some theories that may trigger the cause of diabetes.

The type 2 diabetes is said to progress when there is lack of insulin that is needed to maintain the blood sugar in the body. Another reason is believed to be that the needed insulin not be effective effective to control the blood sugar because of abnormalities in composition. The last reason is said to be that the receptors in cells no longer respond and fail to stimulate the organ that produces the needed insulin.

An individual is likely developing the type 2 diabetes when a person is overweight or obese. The increase of age of an individual is also considered a factor in acquiring this type of diabetes. Some few cases that may lead in this type of diabetes may include when a woman is having her pregnancy, or when a person have some intakes of medicines and drugs. In addition, any sickness or infectious decease that can alter the pancreas production of insulin.

There are some basic treatments for diabetes. These ways can serve an individual its important role in treating diabetes. Here are some ways on how a person can treat diabetes problems.

1. An individual must work thoroughly in obtaining his ideal body weight. Every individual must have a regular exercise and physical endurance tests. People who suffer from diabetes are recommended to be physically fit if possible. Exercises for the lungs and heart may help the person lessen the sugar that causes diabetes.

2. An individual must follow a diabetic diet program. Not being on the proper diet can be a great factor in acquiring type 2 diabetes. It is recommended that a person must lose weight if he is an overweight person. It is advisable that a person must be conscious of the food that he takes. Eat foods that do not have sugar content.

3. The option of the individual to have medication and seek the help of a doctor. Every diabetes patients that have type1 and type 2 diabetes can take insulin daily to sustain the insulin production of the pancreas. There is also the new insulin pump that continuously provides the much-needed insulin. There are also new medications that treat diabetes like the synthetic human insulin, Sulfonylurea drugs, Biguanides, Thiazolidinediones, Meglitinides, Alpha-glucosidase, and other drug combinations.

Diabetes can be prevented with the proper awareness and information regarding this illness. What is important is that a person must have a healthy diet and regular exercise to have a healthy body. Responsibility and discipline is needed to help oneself in overcoming this disease.

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