September 9th, 2009
04:34 PM ET

Health care fact checks

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CNN's truth squad is breaking down the details of the health care reform plan. Health care reform is a complicated issue, so we're making it straightforward by answering your questions. Take a look at this list of FAQs and let us know if you have more.

Will health-care reform start right away?

The Statement: A citizen asked U.S. Rep. Mike Ross, D-Arkansas, at an August 14 town meeting in Arkadelphia, Arkansas, "How soon can you do something about our health care that has to be fixed? … When will this take place? When will this reform take place? Do you have a goal in mind?"

The Facts: If the health-care overhaul is enacted in October, it will take several years for the plan to go into effect, according to the bill. But some benefits would start immediately, including provisions that would require private insurers to provide a minimum level of coverage, Medicare improvements, provisions to decrease administrative costs and targeted assistance for certain people ages 55-64.

"Wholesale reform can't happen overnight. We've got to create a new Health Insurance Exchange through which people will be able to purchase their insurance, and we've got to create a Health Benefits Advisory Committee to make recommendations on the essential benefits package. These changes will take some time," according to Frequently Asked Questions on the House Ways and Means Committee's Web site.

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Filed under: Health Care
soundoff (10 Responses)
  1. Shirley Shelton

    sorry, I meant To Mr. Cooper.

    September 9, 2009 at 7:32 pm |
  2. Mari

    We need healthcare reform, CNN reported today that in 2007 Americans spent.......... $2.2 TRILLION in healthcare! No wonder United Healthcare posted a ......record..... $1 BILLION in profits last quarter!

    No one is against profits, as long that they are not made on the backs of the sick, the elderly and the poor.

    And.... for the far-right....... we DO already have government run healthcare in our country, one example is the Veterans Healthcare system, which is one of the best in the world!

    And....... we already pay for those who are ..... uninsured, with our taxes and higher premiums!

    September 9, 2009 at 7:26 pm |
  3. Ratna, New York, NY

    I have to admit that from the first CNN Presidential candidate, I had the least fate in Obama when it came down to fixing health-care. Well at least he is getting the process started. But we do have a loooong way to go.

    September 9, 2009 at 7:26 pm |
  4. Ron San Bruno, Ca

    I'm with J. Green on this one .

    September 9, 2009 at 7:16 pm |
  5. Tim

    Dear Anderson,

    As for Death Boards, what’s Sarah Palin’s position on the Medical Insurance Companies’ policy of purging or denying coverage to individuals in their hour of need? This certainly causes deaths.

    Further to Sarah Palin, I suggest she look to Britain for political guidance. Over there they have an organisation that is right up her street. It’s known as the Raving Loony Mad Party.

    September 9, 2009 at 7:02 pm |
  6. J. Green

    So, Garrison Keillor suffers a mild stroke and is hospitalized this past Sunday with the plan to release him on Friday. By my calculations that is five days of hospitalization for a "mild stroke". I can guarantee you if that happened to a non-celebrity they would be released within 24-48 hours. That's what's wrong with the health care system; it depends on who you are as to the kind of care you will get. That's just wrong, and we need to fix it.

    September 9, 2009 at 6:11 pm |
  7. Rich

    Why do we need a new Govt' mandated whole sale health care. Just fix what's broken. tort laws, national pricing. Mr. Presidnet Focus on economy

    September 9, 2009 at 6:09 pm |
  8. Judeaa

    I agree that changes to the health care system need to take place sooner than 2 or 3 years. However, the current system is not working and change needs to start somewhere! I have been without health insurance coverage since my divorce nearly 10 years ago. I am self-employed and have tried several times– each year–to find affordable health insurance. The key word here is affordable. As a self-employed single mother of two I have a rough enough time (especially in this current economic climate) just paying the regular household bills!

    September 9, 2009 at 6:05 pm |
  9. Tom Butts

    We have over 300m citizens in the US, of course it will take several years. The point is, after years and years of nothing, the Obama Administration has made an effort to enact change in our non-existent health care system.

    September 9, 2009 at 5:54 pm |
  10. Annie Kate

    So it will take several years for this bill to take full effect....just long enough it seems for Congress to change their minds and re-vote the legislation out of there (if they can do that). The 2 to 3 years for this to take effect sure doesn't help the people who need insurance now – the timetable should be sped up so that the people that need the coverage get it sooner rather than later.

    September 9, 2009 at 5:07 pm |