Court Ruling on Healthcare Could Affect Medicare
The U.S. Supreme Court will rule later this month on the new healthcare reform overhaul put into place by the Obama Administration. Opponents of the healthcare law of President Obama have predicted there will be dire consequences for Medicare benefits ever since the overhaul was signed in 2011. The warnings have for the most part been a political spin, but real problems could take place if the law is struck down later this month by the Supreme Court.
The Affordable Care Act, which is the healthcare reform’s cornerstone, would extend coverage of healthcare to another 23 million people in the U.S. before 2019. However, it has faced a number of roadblocks, as its opponents have argued that its key components are not constitutional.
The Supreme Court will decide later this month and could uphold the entire law, strike down certain portions or throw out the entire law. If the court tosses out the law, important improvements the law makes to Medicare would then disappear. That could in turn paralyze Medicare since the law lays out all the benefits, delivery systems and payment rates. Medicare is operated by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and it has not commented as to what it might do if the law was throw out.
If the law is thrown out, the CMS might use executive orders from the White House to continue paying out claims and providing its benefits so there would not be a freeze up in the Medicare system. However, disruption in the system would be virtually a sure thing.