Thanksgiving and Busting 10 Top Myths on Health Reform

Dear Members of the Doctors for America Family,

Gratitude is good for our mental health, making Thanksgiving one of the healthiest holidays (for our minds!), as we gather with family and friends to give thanks.

This year, we can be thankful that a law ensuring health care for everyone has survived attempts at repeal and is already starting to improve access, quality, and cost of care. The Affordable Care Act was
a historic achievement over a century in the making that has positioned health care as a human right, not a commodity to be bought. We are thankful for the opportunities created by the Affordable Care
Act and the foundation it lays for a healthier America in the future.

With turkey and pumpkin pie come family discussions and debates about hot button topics of the day. As doctors and medical students, we often double at the dinner table as experts on health and health care reform.

You have stories to tell about why improving health and health care is important for your patients. To help with details of the law, we put together a “Busting the Top 10 Myths on the Affordable Care Act” for all of us to use when relatives ask about the biggest myths about health reform. You can also watch the fun 10-minute animated video “Health Reform Hits Main Street” to brush up on ACA basics before entering the blistering political fray that may be the American dinner table. Please feel free to share these resources far and wide.

Thank you for all your hard work and dedication over the years, for all you do for your patients, your communities, and for us as we work together to create a healthier America.

With thanks,

Kohar Jones, Joel Weddington, Carol Duh, Evan Saulino, Mona Mangat, Chris Lillis, Samantha Galing, Alice Chen, Vivek Murthy, and the rest of the Doctors for America Team


Get the Facts:
Busting the 10 Top Myths on the Affordable Care Act
Compiled by Drs. Joel Weddington and Kohar Jones
(download the pdf version 

MYTH #1: It’s too complicated to understand any of it.
FACT: The basics are simple. 32 million more American will be insured. The worst insurance company abuses will end. We will start improving quality and controlling cost for everyone.
FACT: The basics fit into a ten minute YouToon animation: “Health Reform Hits Main Street”
FACT: explains the law and how it will be rolled out.

MYTH #2: It hasn’t helped anyone.
FACT: Millions of Americans are already benefiting from the Affordable Care Act.
FACT: Insurance now covers: 1) children with pre-existing conditions, 2) one million young adults through age 26 who can now stay on their parents’ plans, 3) adults with pre-existing conditions who can now sign up for high risk plans
FACT: No more insurance company caps on how much they will spend on your heath care.

MYTH #3: It increases the federal deficit.
FACT: By promoting access to the right care at the right place at the right time, the Affordable Care Act is designed to save money while keeping people healthier. The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office estimates that it will decrease the deficit by over $100 billion in 10 years.

MYTH #4: It hurts Medicare and seniors.
FACT: The Affordable Care Act makes Medicare more sustainable and more affordable for seniors.
FACT: Seniors get help affording prescription drugs.
FACT: Seniors get annual checkups with no copays.
FACT: Medicare Part B premiums are already going down even lower than expected.

MYTH #5: It’s increasing premiums and costs for families.
FACT: Private employer-based health premiums were skyrocketing before the law, and the Affordable Care Act will help change that.
FACT: Insurance companies now have to explain why they are raising rates on a public website. In California, that has already prevented premium increases.
FACT: If insurance companies do not spend enough of your premium dollars on health care, they are now required to send you a rebate at the end of the year.

MYTH #6: It’s hurting small businesses.
FACT: Small businesses with fewer than 50 employees can be eligible for tax credits of up to 35% of health insurance premiums. Beginning in 2014, the small business tax credits will cover 50% of premiums.

MYTH #7: It’s unconstitutional.
FACT: Lawsuits about the individual mandate are a political move to stall health reform. Over a dozen lawsuits have been thrown out of court. Most law experts have said health reform is constitutional, and most judges—even the most conservative—agree.

MYTH #8: It’s all about insurance and not about health.
FACT: Prevention funds make a long overdue investment in improving health and preventing chronic disease. Communities across the country are already using grant money to help people live healthier lives.
FACT: The law invests in improving quality and coordination of care.

MYTH #9: It’s all about insurance and not about cost.
FACT: The Center for Innovation will promote new models, innovations, and research across the country to start improving care while decreasing costs.
FACT: The law invests in improving quality and coordination of care.

MYTH #10: It’s a government takeover of health care.
FACT: The Affordable Care Act is a partnership between the government and businesses, communities, hospitals, doctors, and patients. It strengthens the private insurance market while protecting people.

FACT: The more we know, the more we can make sure we get to better health and better health care for our families and our country!

Affordable Care Act