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Rep. Farrer Outlines ‘Broken Promises’ Of ‘Private Option'

Updated: Apr 13

On Friday, State Representative Joe Farrer (R-Cabot) issued a statement on his Facebook page about the upcoming audit of the “private option.” Over the weekend, it got 50 shares from Facebookers.

Rep. John Burris, an architect of the PO, has called the audit “theatrics.” But Farrer believes the audit is an important step in examining what he calls broken promises of the healthcare plan.

Here are some excerpts:

I want to thank Senator Bryan King for insisting on an audit on the Arkansas version of Obamacare the “private option.” Since the passage of the Obamacare legislation, Washington is discovering what is actually in the law. Similarly, now that the “private option” is going into effect, Arkansans are finding out what it really is. What we’ve already learned is that these two plans have at least one thing in common: broken promises. With Obamacare, the American people were promised we could keep our policies if we wanted to. We could keep our doctors if we wanted to. We were told that we would save $2,500 on our insurance policies. Now, we find out none of this is true. Over a million Americans have already lost their insurance policies. Many doctors and hospitals are not accepting Obamacare policies and the plans are costing Americans an additional $6,000 in some cases. Now, with the “private option,” we were told Medicaid rolls would decrease. Instead, preliminary numbers have shown a 20% increase in Medicaid enrollment. Secondly, we were told the providers would be reimbursed at private insurance rates. Last week, we found out this was not the case. Blue Cross Blue Shield (the largest insurer in Arkansas) is cutting reimbursement to specialty providers by 25%. In some cases, this is less than what Medicaid currently reimburses.”

Farrer continued:

After months of waiting, we were finally given the policy prices for “private option” plans. Depending on age and geographic location, the PO rates range from $200 to $1200 per month. If the ages of the enrollees are high and the cost-to-premium ratio is higher than the initial actuarial numbers, we are now told there will be premium increases. In the beginning, we were told we would not see premium increases of more than 5% per year. This is also not the case — we have no control over the premium costs. Don’t these broken promises remind you of Washington and Obama?”

You can read Rep. Farrer’s full statement here.

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