The Health Care Email

Aug 05 2009

Unfortunately, the Battle of the Bilge is taking a short time off this week due to a very busy MSC schedule, but we continue to receive many versions of an email related to the health care reform bill and would like to refer you to the PolitiFact’s analysis of the merits of the email, which can be found here.

The Email

Dear Friends:

We thought this e mail of some Gems from the Health Care Bill would be of great interest to you. At the very bottom is an article is a video which details the following: On Page 425 of Obama’s health care bill, the Federal Government will require EVERYONE who is on Social Security to undergo a counseling session every 5 years with the objective being that they will explain to them just how to end their own life earlier. Yes…They are going to push SUICIDE to cut medicare spending!!! Also, planned denial of medical care for seniors.

*Little gems from the Health Care Bill*
*(Urgent–Seniors see page 425 to 429)

Page 16: States that if you have insurance at the time of the bill becoming law and change, you will be required to take a similar plan. If that is not available, you will be required to take the government option!

Page 22: Mandates audits of all employers that self-insure!

Page 29: Admission: your health care will be rationed!

Page 30: A government committee will decide what treatments and benefits you get (and, unlike an insurer, there will be no appeals process)

Page 42: The “Health Choices Commissioner” will decide health benefits for you. You will have no choice. None.

Page 50: All non-US citizens, illegal or not, will be provided with free healthcare services.

Page 58: Every person will be issued a National ID Healthcard.

Page 59: The federal government will have direct, real-time access to all individual bank accounts for electronic funds transfer.

Page 65: Taxpayers will subsidize all union retiree and community organizer health plans (example: SEIU, UAW and ACORN)

Page 72: All private healthcare plans must conform to government rules to participate in a Healthcare Exchange.

Page 84: All private healthcare plans must participate in the Healthcare Exchange (i.e., total government control of private plans)

Page 91: Government mandates linguistic infrastructure for services; translation: illegal aliens

Page 95: The Government will pay ACORN and Americorps to sign up individuals for Government-run Health Care plan.

…And so on…

The Most Outrageous of the Claims

While some items are generally true, most are either misleading or fabrications. The most commented on part of the email, predictably, is ‘Page 50’ – ‘All non-US citizens, illegal or not, will be provided with free healthcare services’. PolitiFact rates this one a ‘Pants on Fire’:

Page 50, which the e-mail references, is part of Section 152, which includes a generic nondiscrimination clause saying that insurers may not discriminate with regard to “personal characteristics extraneous to the provision of high quality health care or related services.”

The section says nothing about “non-US citizens” or immigrants, legal or otherwise. In fact, the legislation specifically states that “undocumented aliens” will not be eligible for credits to help them buy health insurance, in Section 246 on page 143.

The bottom line here is the e-mail is making things up. The bill does not say anything close to “All non-US citizens, illegal or not, will be provided with free health care services.” We rate this chain e-mail statement Pants on Fire!

We’ll Be Back

We’ll return to our own analysis just as soon as possible, and have a few items we’re working on for next week. Sorry for the brief absence.

5 responses so far

5 Responses to “The Health Care Email”

  1. Duncan Bremeron 13 Aug 2009 at 10:30 am

    As an attorney, I read the section quoted on p. 50 exactly the opposite of the way you do. It clearly prevents insurers from discriminating against a person on the basis of legal immigration status.

    Federal and state requirements will include some “free” services, such as after reaching a maximum out-of-pocket limit, certain “preventative” care and emergency care. Some insurers may offer additional “free” services (counseling, for instance). If an insurer provides healthcare services for “free”, then it must provide those services free to any illegal alien who signs up for its program.

    Therefore, all non-US citizens will have the opportunity to be provided to with free healthcare services.

    My only quibble with the quoted “Little Gems” statement is that not “All non-US citizens” will take the opportunity. On the other hand, they pretty much all have the opportunity for free healthcare services now. All they have to do is show up at an emergency room.

  2. Stacy Boudreauxon 21 Aug 2009 at 9:57 am

    I concur with Mr. Bremer’s comment on the page 50 provision. And, I’m certain the courts will concur as well. As far as Section 246 on page 143 language negating this conclusion, it would not. That section applies only to eligibility for credits to buy insurance. This is markedly different than Section 152 which prohibits discrimination in providing care.

    The real issue here, as with any complicated legislation, is the unintended consequences. I’m certain that Congressional proponents of this legislation make representations in good faith that this legislation will achieve the desired results and avoid any undesired consequences which oponents glom onto. But, no legislation, no matter how well-intentioned, which seeks to have the sweeping results of this one can avoid judicial intrepretation at some point which is in opposition to that which its framers intended.

  3. Matthew LoFiegoon 21 Aug 2009 at 4:06 pm

    From Two Sentz:

    “Page 50: All non-US citizens, illegal or not, will be provided with free healthcare services.”

    TRUTH: Pages 50-51 contain a provision stating that discrimination will not be allowed in the provision of health care services. Nowhere does the bill state that non-US citizens will be provided free health care services. The bill prohibits federal dollars from being used for undocumented immigrants.

  4. Rogeron 03 Sep 2009 at 7:39 pm

    All of the citations cited here are part of a hoax e-mail that is debunked here: and here: Most e-mails that circulate on this subject contain mis-information, as is the case here.

  5. traci youngon 02 Oct 2009 at 9:09 pm

    I found this information and read a few of your posts. It is great info and added it to my alerts. Look forward to reading more from you in the future.