Andy Slavitt, the acting administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services from 2015 until January 2017, asserts the ACA might be a catalyst to universal coverage.
In a telephone conversation with the Fort Collins Coloradoan, Slavitt said:
The good news is we made a pretty remarkable transformation in this country that we kind of take for granted. Eight years ago, the norm for most Americans was if you wanted to change jobs and you had an illness in your family, you were nervous to do so.
The efforts to dismantle the ACA last summer, the first time Republicans controlled both chambers of Congress and the White House since the law was signed, galvanized the idea that health care should be a right, not a privilege, Slavitt said. According to a Gallup poll, 56 percent of U.S. citizens believe health insurance is a government responsibility.
Slavitt said he believes the states will be the first to move in the direction of true universal health care coverage, in some form or another. As he put it, Obamacare wouldn’t have happened without Romneycare — the Massachusetts program started by former Republican candidate for president and Gov. Mitt Romney — serving as the model. Slavitt’s newest venture, United States of Care, is designed in part to provide expertise and professional support in the health care debate.
I think in the next few years, (the state level is) exactly where the action’s going to be. I think eventually, once a decade or so, we take another shot at it at the federal level. So you can be sure that at some point in the 2020s there will be another opportunity in the national level. But until then, there’s a great amount that can be done in Colorado and other states.
To read more on Slavitt and a counterpoint by a conservative thinker read The Coloradoan