The odds of healthcare reform surviving are ...

Share this article:
James M. Berklan, Editor
James M. Berklan, Editor

I wonder what the bookies in London are thinking about the odds of the U.S. healthcare reform law surviving. Surely they have taken bets on its possible demise, just as they do seemingly everything else with a questionable outcome.

It's widely believed the U.S. Supreme Court will hand down its rulings on the Affordable Care Act in the coming week. The members of the court made their decisions weeks ago, of course. But the final tally has not yet been publicly released, and the final written opinions may still be in the polishing stages.

Based on the questions posed by the justices during arguments several months ago, it appears the individual mandate (for buying insurance) is toast. It's a goner by a 5-4 vote, possibly 6-3 or more.

The bigger question to me, and so many others, is whether they have voted to dump the entire reform package. That is more of a toss-up. Will the justices say a broken axle means the whole car should be taken to the junkyard? Or will they try to salvage the nifty new power steering, some new navigational gear and the fantastic new capacity that vehicles before this never had?

I don't profess to have the answer to that one, though 51% of me believes the court's conservative majority will use its power to tell the administration, “Sorry, but we're putting emotions aside and we want you to start all over.” And probably without the “sorry,” too.

It's just a guessing game, though, one that has been played thousands of times in offices and homes around the country. Even major long-term care lobbyists — who are often in the know ahead of time, if not happily so — admit they don't know.

My sense is that many long-term care operators would vote the same as many business owners would. They'd say toss out the entire healthcare reform package, thousands upon thousands of pages that it is.

My fear is it might happen, washing out many lesser-known, but necessary provisions that long-term care operators desperately need to move forward and thrive.

Share this article:
close

Next Article in Daily Editors' Notes

Daily Editors' Notes

McKnight's Daily Editor's Notes features commentary on the latest in long-term care news. Entries are written by Editorial Director John O'Connor on Monday and Friday; Staff Writer Tim Mullaney on Tuesday, Editor James M. Berklan on Wednesday and Senior Editor Elizabeth Newman on Thursday.

    ALL MCKNIGHT'S BLOGS

    More in Daily Editors' Notes

    Yet another report takes aim at nursing home staffing levels

    Yet another report takes aim at nursing home ...

    Seems like it is was only a few weeks ago that the New York Times was blasting the nursing home industry for playing fast and loose with staffing numbers. Now ...

    Maybe this sector's bankers need to start taking their own advice

    Maybe this sector's bankers need to start taking ...

    First and foremost, the NIC conference is a conduit that links those with money to those who need it. The event also features informative educational sessions that delve into where ...

    ICD-10 is around the corner, for real this time

    ICD-10 is around the corner, for real this ...

    There's a looming massive report on all the hospital readmissions data in your area and the strategic plan your facility needs to pursue. It involves talking to lots of employees, ...