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ACA & Women, ACA: Basics

Raising your Voice: Tips for Skeptical Audiences

Making your case for health care reform implementation can be tricky, particularly if you are talking to a skeptic. However, when educated on the important provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) support usually increases – particularly among women and Independents. Because the new law can be confusing, it is important to spread the word with friends and family about what the ACA can do for them and their family.

Here are some messaging tips:

Skeptic: “I am already receiving good health care and have great doctors.”

Many skeptics are so because they feel they already have great insurance and doctors. While this may be true, it is important – and many are receptive – when they believe that the ACA will give them greater control, more protections, improved care and will bring an overall prevention strategy to the health care system – lowering costs for everyone.

Storytelling: Stories do a good job illustrating real-life situations and how the law has already benefitted an individual. Here are some provisions of the ACA that are effective in storytelling, remember to highlight the specific provisions of the law that will address the issue in your story:

  • Pre-existing condition protections (already for kids, adults in 2014)
  • Focus on preventive care – tell a story about a free preventive service you received such as a mammogram or annual check-up
  • Help for small businesses
  • Reduces waste, fraud and abuse in Medicare

Remember, we want to hear your story too! Share it, here.

Protections: Remind your skeptic that the status quo is not working. We cannot go back to the days when insurance companies are free to discriminate on gender, pre-existing condition status, are allow for limits on your coverage. “The ACA puts health care back where it belongs: into the hands of you and your doctor!”

Effective “one-liners:”

  • “The law requires members of Congress to get their health care from the same insurance marketplace (exchanges) as millions of Americans and small businesses.”
  • “The law expands preventive care and annual check-ups with no financial barriers, like co-pays, which will help lower costs for all of us and allow people to take better care of themselves.”
  • “The law makes health care coverage affordable for small businesses by allowing them to band together to get the same rates as larger companies.”
  • “The law creates marketplaces that will generate greater competition, accountability, and transparency within the insurance industry so premiums can come down.”

Why is it important to get skeptics and/or indifferent individuals on our side?

Health care reform will improve the quality and affordability of care for millions of Americans.

According to a recent blog in the Huffington Post, here is what America might look like without reform:

• We will still have 50.7 million Americans without health insurance. Some of them simply will go without care until they face an emergency. And when those emergencies are encountered, those visits will cost them (really, us because the uncompensated care costs are shifted) much more than regular health coverage. The average family pays more than $1,000 extra per year in health care premiums to cover the costs incurred by the uninsured.

• Americans with cancer, HIV, or other pre-existing illnesses could be denied insurance coverage forever, driving them into poverty and onto public health services – into economic dependency.

• We will continue wasting more than $700 billion every year on unnecessary procedures.

• Women will continue to be charged 50 percent more than men for the same exact coverage as men (coverage that does not include pregnancy and maternal care), putting them at an economic, as well as health disadvantage, and disproportionately hurting single moms.

Without the Affordable Care Act, more people will be sicker, more people will pay more for their care, and more people will pay more for other people’s care.

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