Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Time to sign up for health insurance

     Open enrollment for coverage by the Affordable Care Act, also called Obamacare, ends this year on March 31. We encourage all those without insurance to visit the health insurance exchange website in your state—in Idaho it is Your Health Idaho—and select the plan that best fits your needs.

     This is no small issue.

     Sen. Angus King, an Independent from Maine, believes that having insurance is a matter of life and death. It’s a belief grounded in his own experience. King survived melanoma because he had the insurance that supported treatment, he says. King also believes that 15,000 to 25,000 people a year die in the United States because they do not have insurance.

     The Affordable Care Act has set March 31 as the deadline for individuals to obtain health insurance or pay a penalty. Some argue, sometimes quite gleefully, that any failure of younger people to obtain coverage is why the ACA will fail. Others are convinced that the ACA requirements are the very things causing them financial and health harm, even in the face of factual evidence to the contrary.

     Sen. King, however, is not treating all this as a simple matter of politics. 

     “That’s a scandal—those people (the ones who say young people would be better off if they did not bother to insure themselves) are guilty of murder in my opinion,” according to King. “Some of those people they persuade are going to end up dying because they don’t have health insurance. For people who do that to other people in the name of some obscure political ideology is one of the grossest violations of our humanity I can think of. ”

     We could not agree more. It may be a kind thing to have a fundraiser at a local watering hole to help stave off financial ruin from a torn ACL or a broken leg or cancer, but fundraisers are not only bad social policy, they cannot even accomplish their stated goal when even simple surgeries run well into five figures. Scare stories and political opposition have created a fear that signing up with the ACA will either be ruinously expensive or pointlessly frustrating. The reality these many months after its rollout is neither.

     A health care system that depends on insurance depends on insurance being available to everyone and everyone taking advantage of that access. The right thing to do is sign up for insurance against the unthinkable and the unaffordable. Time’s up.

About Comments

Comments with content that seeks to incite or inflame may be removed.

Comments that are in ALL CAPS may be removed.

Comments that are off-topic or that include profanity or personal attacks, libelous or other inappropriate material may be removed from the site. Entries that are unsigned or contain signatures by someone other than the actual author may be removed. We will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or any other policies governing this site. Use of this system denotes full acceptance of these conditions. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions. You are fully responsible for the content that you post.

The comments below are from the readers of and in no way represent the views of Express Publishing, Inc.

You may flag individual comments. You may also report an inappropriate or offensive comment by clicking here.

Flagging Comments: Flagging a comment tells a site administrator that a comment is inappropriate. You can find the flag option by pointing the mouse over the comment and clicking the 'Flag' link.

Flagging a comment is only counted once per person, and you won't need to do it multiple times.

Proper Flagging Guidelines: Every site has a different commenting policy - be sure to review the policy for this site before flagging comments. In general these types of comments should be flagged:

  • Spam
  • Ones violating this site's commenting policy
  • Clearly unrelated
  • Personal attacks on others
Comments should not be flagged for:
  • Disagreeing with the content
  • Being in a dispute with the commenter

Popular Comment Threads

 Local Weather 
Search archives:

Copyright © 2020 Express Publishing Inc.   Terms of Use   Privacy Policy
All Rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of Express Publishing Inc. is prohibited. 

The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.