I have to admit that I am a bit of a policy wonk and since I work in health care, that must make me a health care policy wonk. What this means is that I know more about the Affordable Care Act, lovingly referred to as Obamacare in some circles, than the average bear. I know all about health insurance exchanges, MLR, AVs, APTCs and CSRs. And really, you should too. Know at least some of this stuff. I say it all the time that the Obama Administration let his opponents define his signature piece of legislation. They let them take control of the conversation. It was unfortunate.
Knowing what I know, I can say that there’s a lot of good stuff in that there legislation. Do I think that it will bring down health care costs? Definitely not in the first year when the health insurance exchanges open for business. Do I think that it will decrease the number of uninsured across the nation? Absolutely. Think Massachusetts but on a nationwide scale.
So, my mix of competitiveness and policy wonkishness sometimes gets my ire up. Sometimes, when someone, somewhere, anywhere makes a statement or proclamation on health care reform requirements that I know are just dead wrong, whew. Like today when I was irritated that another organization is publishing rubbish on policy which seems exceptionally clear to me. And because I am competitive, there is nothing quite like shooting out an email detailing why their policy assumptions are incorrect and supporting my rightness with citations to various regulatory guidance. It makes me feel like I believe generals in battle feel when they are certain that victory is at hand. It is like that.
Somehow my job has transformed to mostly policy. I seem to have relatively extricated myself from most of the politics. So much easier to have a discussion on policy. Not so easy to have a discussion about policy through a veil of politics. Makes you feel as if you are being smothered. Or not heard. I prefer to just have it out. In the open. Your bring your regulations and I’ll bring mine. Let’s have a go at it. In the immortal words of Tony Horton, “bring it, bring it.”