The Navy Times has a story about the coming implementation of the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, and the impact it will likely have on the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Starting in 2014, the law punishes those without health insurance, and the VA’s health plan meets the minimum requirement for coverage – which means that there may be an increase in the number of people seeking health care from the VA.
It is unclear how many veterans might turn to VA, but the 2014 budget includes $85 million to cover increased medical care costs, plus $3.4 million to cover administrative costs because VA would have to provide a written statement to each enrolled veteran about their coverage.
The VA’s 2014 budget estimates coverage for 6.5 million veterans, an increase of 1.3% over fiscal year 2013 – about 100,000 more veterans than this year.
There’s a problem there:
Kenneth Kizer, director of the Institute for Population Health Improvement at University of California Davis Health System, estimates 1.8 million uninsured veterans will be looking for coverage when the Affordable Care Act requirement kicks in next year.
Last time I checked, 1,800,000 is a whole hell of a lot greater than 100,000, so there are going to be issues with VA health care next year, as if there weren’t already.
Cross posted from After the Army