Yet more evidence that, sadly, I was correct in my predictions for the so-called “Massachusetts Miracle.” It had a PR campaign so effective that even some savvy and skeptical bloggers were suckered by it. Per Boston’s WCVB television station:
The state’s landmark health insurance plan continues to face daunting questions of affordability.NewsCenter 5’s Amalia Barreda reported Monday that on July 1, every adult resident of Massachusetts is required to have coverage, but the price of the policies may be beyond what many people can pay.
The WCVB piece talks about the Tylers, a couple who owns a diner called Ed’s Place (pictured above).
The gist? The costs of state-mandated healthcare may force them to close the business. Now, lawmakers are absolutely right that the Tylers should not be going without healthcare. The only problem is that they didn’t bother figuring out how to make it possible without driving them out of business.
There are potential solutions out there. Time to work on them with a little more forethought and hard work than Massachusetts bothered to do.
The last time I reported on this I said I hate to say “I told you so.” Enough, already: I told you so. Now, let’s see if Massachusetts lawmakers can step up to the plate and find a more workable solution.
My goal is not to point fingers, but to point out problems. Now that they have plenty of them, we should all be willing to offer constructive suggestions. Here’s one: include Medicaid in the program. Premiums will be more affordable, and families like the Tylers might have another option besides bankruptcy or tax evasion. At the same time, ease the requirements on working families like the folks who run Ed’s Place.
It will take some work, but it can be done.