I've been thinking a lot about President Obama's Proposed Healthcare Reform. I've heard lots of opinions about it, both pro and con, but I hadn't really paid much attention. So, since I promised K. I took a look at the President's plan and let me tell you something...it's pretty much the same thing as HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1986). Go ahead, click the link that will take you to Obama's plan, read it, and then compare it to this:
HIPAA, (Public Law 104-191) amended the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, has several aspects, but the one patients are most aware of is the aspect pertaining to patient privacy and protected health information (PHI). In addition to patient privacy, HIPAA also intends to:Seems to me that Obama's plan and the one already enacted as law are an awful lot alike. Wouldn't it just be better to enforce what's already in place rather than re-inventing the wheel? Again.
• Improve the portability and continuity of health insurance coverage in the group and individual markets by:
o Limiting exclusions for pre-existing medical conditions;
o Prohibiting discrimination in enrollment and premiums against employees and their dependents based on health status;
o Guaranteeing availability of health insurance coverage for small employers and renewablity of health insurance coverage in both the small and large group markets;
o Providing credit for prior health coverage and a process for transmitting certificates and other information concerning prior coverage to a new group health plan or issuer;
o Providing new rights that allow individuals to enroll for health coverage when they lose other health coverage, change from group to individual coverage, or have a new dependent; and
o Preserving, through narrow pre-emption provisions, the states’ traditional role in regulating health insurance, including state flexibility to provide greater protections.
• Combat waste, fraud, and abuse in health insurance and health care delivery;
• Promote the use of medical savings accounts (MSAs);
• Improve access to long-term care services and coverage;
• Simplify the administration of health insurance;
• Create standards for electronic health information transactions;
• Create privacy standards for health information; and
• Create unique identifiers for providers, health plans, employers, and individuals.
Now, I know that there are things in Obama's plan that HIPPA doesn't address. Like healthcare for uninsured Americans. Hello, Medicaid. Problem is, Medicaid is broken. And I mean B-R-O-K-E-N, but that's a post for another day.