Chief Justice John Roberts surprised everyone by being the deciding vote in upholding the constitutionality of President Obama’s signature legislation The Affordable Care Act. While continuing to be used by opponents as a political football I offer eight reasons for throwing the Chief Justice a Big Kiss:
Children with pre-existing conditions who can no longer be excluded from coverage on their parents’ health insurance.
- Young adults who now have coverage on their parents’ policies.
- Senior adults who have received rebates for prescription drugs that had to be purchased once they reached the coverage gap; and senior adults who are now receiving annual preventive care check-ups with no out-of-pocket expenses.
- Women who can no longer be charged higher premiums because of their gender, and who are receiving mammograms and pap smears with no out-of-pocket expenses.
- And we see the faces of those who are waiting expectantly for 2014 when they will be among those who will finally benefit from our nation’s abundant health care resources:
- Low-income working families living on up to 133% of the federal poverty level who will have access to health care through the expansions of Medicaid.
- Persons with cancer and other serious medical conditions who will no longer be denied coverage by insurers; and persons who can no longer be dropped from coverage when they get sick.
- Middle-income families without employer-sponsored insurance who will have subsidies to help purchase affordable insurance in the new exchanges (marketplaces).
As a pastor I believe that affordable, accessible health care for everyone is a faith-based value. While imperfect I think the Affordable Health Care legislation is the best plan presented by either political party in moving our nation closer to universal health care. It is the right thing to do.