There are many changes being made to health care during this Trumpcare overhaul. Prices will be based on age rather than income, only the rich will benefit with tax breaks and Medicaid subsidies will end by 2020. As if these things weren’t enough, with the proposed Medicaid cuts, many people are at risk for losing their mental healthcare coverage.
This sounds completely insane, but this is exactly what’s going down.
Under the Affordable Care Act, mental health services were defined as essential benefits, which meant that Medicaid was mandated to cover those types of disorders. The ACA also offered states billions of dollars to expand Medicaid to people just above the poverty line. About two million people gained coverage through that expansion. Since the ACA also promised to match federal dollars to the states’ Medicaid expenses, this prompted states to expand behavioral health services. With the Medicaid expansion gone, more costs will be shifted back to the states, and these health services are at serious risk of being cut.
Without these federal funds and mandates, those who desperately NEED these mental healthcare benefits will have to pay out-of-pocket or simply not receive help. If I were a betting girl, I would definitely go with the latter.
To make things even worse, in February, the House voted to overturn a rule by the Obama administration that would keep guns out of the hands of the mentally ill. This rule would have required the Social Security Administration to send records of some beneficiaries with severe mental disabilities to the FBI’s Criminal Background Check System. Those records would have made it illegal for those people to purchase a firearm.
The National Rifle Association pushed for a repeal. Of course, the Republicans bowed down to the NRA and argued it infringed upon Second Amendment rights by denying due process. At times, it feels as though the Second Amendment is the only amendment that matters to these gun nuts.
So, let’s put this in perspective: Very mentally ill citizens will be devoid of mental health treatment. Since they are not being treated, some will be out-of-control – and it’s perfectly legal for these individuals to buy guns. This seems totally legit.
Let the mall shootings, the school shootings, the nightclub shootings commence! They are already here and more are on the horizon. Say what you will, but our already lax gun laws gives America the highest percentage of gun-related deaths and crimes out of all the higher-income countries in the world. I suppose we have to be first in something.