A healthy debate
The fight over the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act came to Indiana this week.
On Monday, Americans United for Change, a group frequently aligned with the White House, and Heritage Action for America, a group associated with the conservative Heritage Foundation, held dueling demonstrations over Obamacare in downtown Indianapolis.
Heritage brought in former Republican Sen. Jim DeMint of South Carolina, who is now the president of the foundation, to speak. About 300 people showed up at the groups meeting at the downtown Hilton. Indianapolis was the ninth city on the groups anti-Obamacare tour.
That group is arguing for Congress to de-fund the federal health care program – even though that would likely lead to a partial government shutdown.
The fight over Obamacare in Indiana follows the recent release of two studies that show Hoosiers health is in decline.
A study from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Trust for Americas Health found Indiana ranked eighth in the nation for obesity. More than 30 percent of Hoosiers are obese, and 65 percent of adults in Indiana are overweight. And the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention found that Indiana ranked sixth in the nation for infant mortality.
In light of those statistics, the arguments from American United for Change may be more appealing. The group said Obamacare is already helping Hoosiers.
Thanks to the provisions of the law that have already taken effect, 62,000 young adults were able to stay on their parents insurance policies; 85,000 seniors have saved more than $60 million on prescription drugs; more preventive services are covered for people with private insurance and Medicare; and nearly 376,000 children with pre-existing conditions are not denied health coverage.