Madison parent worried about GOP health care proposal

Madison parent worried about GOP health care proposal

Republicans are touting the new health care bill they hope will replace the Affordable Care Act. It removes the individual mandate and most taxes, but it’s unclear how many people would lose coverage and how much it will cost. With many of the details still murky, local families are concerned.

Like any good mom, Cassandra Krajnik, of Madison, just wants her son to be safe, happy and healthy. But with Owen, her son who suffers from a congenital heart defect, that isn’t so easy.

“The blood doesn’t even go through the right side of his heart it just kind of bypasses it,” Krajnik said.

At just 4 years old, he’s had three open heart surgeries. Krajnik said the Affordable Care Act has helped ease some of the pain.

“Before the Affordable Care Act came into play a lot of families like ours went bankrupt trying to keep their children alive,” Krajnik said.

The GOP health care plan would still cover things important to Krajnik like pre-existing conditions, allow dependent coverage until age 26, and bans lifetime and annual limits. However, it does eliminate the individual and employer mandate and awards subsidies based on age rather than income. It also sets higher cap on what you can make to get one, $75,000 for individuals rather than $50,000.

“So it’s something of a shift of resources from lower income people to people with more resources,” said Donna Friedsam, a health policy program director at University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Supporters of the bill said it would increase competition in the marketplace, making it more affordable for patients. But others said it doesn’t go far enough.

“Some people say this is just to Obamacare 2.0, Obamacare light,” Friedsam said.

That’s an indication to Krajnik that a lot can change in the next few months.

“That makes us really nervous because they could change their mind,” Krajnik said.