In the Name of the Compassionate and Infinitely Merciful Precious Beloved
By the Grace of the Beloved, I was featured during the healthcare segment of the recent debate between Tammy Duckworth and Congressman Joe Walsh. The video can be found here.
The text of the segment is below (emphasis added):
The Affordable Care Act, also known as ObamaCare, is the most sweeping health care law since Medicare and has been one of the most polarizing issues in America.
Congressman Joe Walsh vows to repeal ObamaCare while his challenger, Tammy Duckworth, touts it as a major victory.
Though, the two couldn't be farther apart on this issue, you might be surprised, they actually agree on one thing: they're both concerned that the Affordable Care Act will hurt small businesses.
Chicago Prime Steakhouse in Schaumburg is one of them.
"The Affordable Care Act is simply not affordable for my business" explains restaurant co-owner Andy Kalkounos.
He says, even now, he can't afford health insurance for any of his 50 employees and he won't be able to afford what the law requires. Under the law, businesses with 50 or more full-time employees must start providing health insurance for all workers by 2014 or face stiff financial penalties.
"I will tell you this is going to be something that is devastating for me," Kalkounos continues. "I can't speak to everyone else. I'm not a small business representative. I represent Chicago Prime Steakhouse, and I can tell you this is a huge burden for my father and I, my family and my staff."
It's forcing Kalkounos to re-think plans of expanding his business and stay under 50 employees.
When the Supreme Court upheld the 2010 Health Care Reform Law as constitutional in June,
Duckworth lauded it as a victory for children with pre-existing conditions, young adults who will be covered under their parents until age 26, many women who now have access to free birth control, and seniors who can't be charged higher for their age or health.
"We need to roll up our sleeves and fix the problems...make sure the kids with pre-existing conditions are covered, women can't be charged more because they are women, seniors can't have their insurance dropped, that parents can keep kids on their insurance until they're 26, and that people like my brother who are hanging on until 2014 so their pre-existing conditions are covered, will be covered," Duckworth says.
The Republican representative argues it's bad for seniors and Medicare and calls ObamaCare a "massive tax plan" that will not only "devastate businesses in this country," kill jobs, and bankrupt the nation, but will also "get rid of physicians as we know them."
"There's only one law on the books right now that impacts every 60, 70, and 80-year old person watching this debate. And that's ObamaCare," Walsh said in the FOX Chicago debate. "Let people shop across state lines for health care, tort reform; expand health savings accounts putting more Americans in charge of their own health care. We did not need to reinvent one fifth of our economy to go after pre-existing conditions. "
Dr. Hesham Hassaballa says Walsh's statement isn't far from the truth.
"I am certain that the uncertainty of the future of healthcare will push some doctors to go out of healthcare," says Dr. Hassaballa, who specializes in pulmonary and critical care.
Dr. Hassaballa loves his job, but admits he worries whether the Health Care Law will burden physicians with more regulations and restrictions and wonders how this new standardization of healthcare will affect the quality of patient care.
Dr. Hassaballa belives that, "if you have a system that just makes a worker, you have an office worker, and a hospital worker and they're not invested, that would be detrimental to everybody."