Reform Tied 2 to 2

A federal judge in Florida ruled today that the Affordable Care Act (a.k.a national healthcare reform) is unconstitutional. He sided with 26 states that filed a suit challenging the law’s authority to require individuals to purchase health insurance. One other court in Virginia had reached the same conclusion, while two other federal district courts have upheld the new law. What does this all mean?

Well, tonight we will listen to Fox, CNN and MSNBC speculate, but what it really means is that the constitutionality of the new law will have to be determined by the highest court in the land, the United States Supreme Court.

While the appeals proceed, N.J. hospitals will continue to care for all the uninsured who come to them for care, regardless of their ability to pay. We have to under New Jersey state law, and we want to because it is our mission.

Written by Betsy Ryan at 19:41

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John Dalton said...
Having spent 13 years receiving a terrific education from the Sisters of Charity, I've always believed that access to health care is a fundamental human right. The remainder of the developed world also sees it that way, providing access to health care for their citizens.

Rights carry responsibilities. The right to drive an automobile carries with it the responsibility to purchase auto insurance. Accordingly, the right to access health care carries a concomitant responsibility to participate in the system by purchasing health insurance. Hence, the individual mandate.

It's a sad state of affairs when so many Americans display such a callous disregard for the needs of their fellow citizens. Unfortunately, some of them wind up in our Emergency Rooms following traumatic injury without sufficient resources to cover the costs of care. They consider themselves immortal and refuse to purchase health insurance. Their cost of care then gets shifted to the insured population.

I'm reasonably certain that, were they alive today, our Founding Fathers likely would have agreed that the right to health care carries with it the responsibility to participate in the health insurance system. Now, let’s pray that the Supreme Court sees it the way our Founding Fathers would.
January 31, 2011 06:05