Friday, April 18, 2014
PLACERVILLE, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

False information from our congressman

EDITOR:

Congressman Tom McClintock writes in the Mountain Democrat (Jan. 1, 2014) that the president of the California Medical Association reports that 70 percent of California doctors are declining to participate in Covered California, the Health Exchange established to help implement the Affordable Care Act.

This is inaccurate, as discussed in the Dec. 12, 2013 Los Angeles Times. In fact, the California Medical Association does not keep records that would indicate how many doctors are participating. According to the same LA Times article, Covered California claims that 80 percent of California doctors are participating. Congressman McClintock’s op ed piece also claims that two-thirds of the Exchange applicants are forced into Medicaid, known here as MediCal. That also is inaccurate.

It is disturbing that such a high public official is carelessly putting out egregious misinformation. And, it is destructive of public trust.

PETE MELNICOE
Placerville

Letters to the Editor

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Discussion | 17 comments

  • AlanJanuary 06, 2014 - 3:18 pm

    Well, it seems Tom gets a free public platform on the Mountain Democrat, as often as he wants, to write anything he wants. I fear most readers don't bother taking the time to fact-check his politically-motivated comments. Thanks for taking the time to do so.

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  • VernJanuary 08, 2014 - 10:00 pm

    McClintock disses solar power; Congressman Tom McClintock (R-Elk Grove) had harsh words for the solar industry in comments to the county chamber on June 14. “Solar power is not new, not promising and certainly not cheap,” he said. The costs of a heavily subsidized solar industry are buried in taxes, and are an example of free-market meddling that drives the outspoken conservative crazy. “If you leave prices alone they convey valuable data that consumers need to make rational decisions in the marketplace,” he said. “Subsidies corrupt that data, and entice people into making uneconomical decisions.” “Solar power has been sold to us as a great thing, it just needed to be subsidized a little bit … protect it, pour some money into research and development … this new promising technology will lead us into a Valhalla of clean, cheap electricity,” he said. “That’s a lie.”

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  • Dink LaneJanuary 06, 2014 - 4:30 pm

    You are right Pete, ....... McClintock's statement is misleading at best ......... What he quoted was "Doctors who make House calls." They do not work for the Insurance Companies in the Exchange and therefore would have to sign on with Kaiser or Anthem Blue Cross...... Most of the people these 'General Practitioners' see people who are on Medicaid (Poor) or Medicare (Elderly) ..... McClintock is planning on the Low-Informed Voter to hear "70% of the Doctors" and think well that has to be "70% of ALL doctors"....... Most of the people who listen to McClintock still think everyone is getting kicked off their Health Care.... (Yet 85% of the people reading this post still have the same insurance policy they had before.)

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  • GeraldJanuary 08, 2014 - 7:56 am

    There are doctors who make house calls? Do they ride dinosaurs to each patients house?

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  • PollockerJanuary 08, 2014 - 9:25 am

    Six times more people were kicked off their plans because they didn't comply with Obamacare than have enrolled in Obamacare. That's just for now. And those numbers don't bother you? Estimates are that tens of millions will lose their company-provided health care this year for the exact same reason. This will include most NON-UNION employers nationwide! Firms will have to choose new Obama-approved plans, and their rates will go up, up, up. Estimated rate increases for Blue Shield this year are 32-100%+ in premium increases. Who do you think is going to pay those increases? Those who are employed. I do this for a living, Dink, and this is straight out of my broker's mouth a week ago.

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  • Vicci NolanJanuary 08, 2014 - 11:18 am

    Straight from your broker's mouth?! Then it must be true! LMAO!

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  • Vicci NolanJanuary 08, 2014 - 11:20 am

    This may help. How can you tell if Congressman McClintock is telling a lie? His mouth is moving.

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  • Gaspen AspenJanuary 08, 2014 - 9:04 am

    Seriously? You're surprised a politician was carless with the truth? They and this president wouldn't know the truth if it was etched on their foreheads.

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  • kggJanuary 08, 2014 - 9:32 am

    pete writes: "It is disturbing that such a high public official is carelessly putting out egregious misinformation. And, it is destructive of public trust." kgg writes: disturbing yes, but typical of mcclintock.

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  • Dink LaneJanuary 08, 2014 - 12:21 pm

    Pollocker: "Six times more people were kicked off their plans because they didn't comply" ...... where do you get this stuff??? The only people who had their policies CANCELED were the ones who -- bought it AFTER 2009; it ONLY paid for catastrophic care; and [and this is a BIG ONE] the company that sold the policy..... Wanted to get in the EXCHANGE .... Specifically Anthem-Blue-Cross...... 85% of CA have Health Care through their jobs.... NO DIFFERENCE!

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  • PollockerJanuary 08, 2014 - 12:37 pm

    You're still spreading misinformation. You are assuming that people who bought their insurance after 2009 were grandfathered and were therefore able to keep their plans. Not true! Any change to your policy caused it to be ungrandfathered, and that will include most plans in the U.S. Most businesses did not keep their plans exactly the same in order to stay grandfathered because it did not make financial sense. Blue Shield won't have any employers who are grandfathered in 2014 -- again, straight out of the broker's mouth. So those plans (my firm is one of them) will get ALL NEW coverage, with rates expected to increase 32-100+%. And guess what? Here's something to add to this: If you have multiple children on your employer's plan, they (or you) will be paying PER CHILD. There won't be an employee plus (unlimited) family rate. You think employers are just going to eat that extra cost? Maybe certain unions with Cadillac benefits (like those $10 copays) will, but most won't.

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  • PollockerJanuary 08, 2014 - 12:40 pm

    And P. S. We do not have health care (not capitalized, retired teacher!), we have health insurance. Many employers are dropping it and telling their employees to get it on the exchange (with those nice fat deductibles) or passing on those cost increases to their employees. Please explain to me how the middle class was helped by this. We're being screwed.

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  • Dink LaneJanuary 08, 2014 - 1:19 pm

    Pollocker: I really believe 'you' believe what you are saying.... 1. -- Grandfather applies to "Before" 2009..... 2. -- UPS along with many others "Dropped" their spouse's policies.... No tax breaks on those policies.... Ask your UPS guy when he comes by.... He didn't lose his... [News media does NOT "Report" they only "Repeat" the press release.... and every press release is ONE sided -- No one bothered to air / print / post any correction... Maybe because the MEDIA didn't think it was "Their" error... only the press release writer's error.] P.S. -- Correct about the error on "health care" vs. insurance. I apologize.

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  • PollockerJanuary 08, 2014 - 1:44 pm

    Wrong. It's not believing, it's being educated about it. From the Blue Shield web site - small group plans. Worse for large employers, but you can read that on-line. https://www.blueshieldca.com/bsca/about-blue-shield/health-reform/employers/small-businesses/grandfathered-plans/home.sp Under health reform, if a company purchased a health plan on or before March 23, 2010, their health carrier may give them the option to “grandfather" their plan which would exempt the plan from some health reform mandates. (Keep reading!) Blue Shield offered grandfathered plan status to qualified small business customers renewing on or after March 23rd 2010. However, beginning January 1, 2012 Blue Shield will no longer offer grandfathered status on small group plans. Why is this change being made?The grandfathering provision in the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was meant to allow small groups with coverage on or before March 23, 2010, to keep that coverage without having to adopt all of health reform’s new provisions. When Blue Shield began to implement ACA, we chose to offer grandfathered plan status to our small group plans. ---Here's where it gets interesting --- However, the majority of our small business customers choose not to retain their plans’ grandfathered status in favor of switching to a plan that would better meets their current needs. We believe this is occurring because the requirements to retain a plan’s grandfathered status make it difficult for employers to adjust their contribution levels or make other desired plan changes as they may want. (See ?) The link goes on to say that they offered new plans instead. But the new plans aren't compliant with Obamacare and they'll be dumped this year. So, it's not "85% have employer coverage and get to keep it." Yes, some privately held insurance policies were retained. But many millions weren't. And MANY employees will lose their existing coverage this year and will be either offered something more expensive (or will be subsidized by those of us who pay taxes) or they'll go on the exchange.

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  • Dink LaneJanuary 08, 2014 - 2:58 pm

    Pollocker: I can tell by your writing that you are an intelligent person..... The statement "no longer offer grandfathered status" ....... says ...... Grandfathered [specifically stated in ACA] is allowed and legal...... BUT you will see Blue Shield is OPTING to NOT offer it any more....... please note in my 12:21 pm post I wrote: "and [and this is a BIG ONE] the company that sold the policy..... Wanted to get in the EXCHANGE .... Specifically Anthem-Blue-Cross...... [Yes, another error -- I said 'cross' and not 'shield'] ......... This particular Insurance Company was told three (3) times they violated CA' Covered "Exchange" regulations.... Twice (2 times) they PAID a re-fund to their customers.... and the 3rd time they GAVE UP the Junk Policies to GET back in the exchange...... You are right Pollocker.... That's what it says on Their website.... Written by them.... Now think.... Why.... Why ..... are they giving UP something that could STAND according to the ACA documents??? Could it be....MORE $$$$ on the Exchange? .......... They hoped the GOP & ALEC [of which they are a member] would get Health Care Insurance Regulations Blocked......

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  • Phil VeerkampJanuary 08, 2014 - 10:17 pm

    Vern, isn't it more accurate to state that Tom disses solar SUBSIDIES?

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  • Dee#1January 09, 2014 - 8:49 am

    Yes Phil, but we mustn't let facts stand in the way of propaganda.

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