March 08, 2013

ObamaCare Survival Guide by Nick Tate

Ok, to preface, I feel I should disclose that I am all over the place when it comes to politics. Pro-Gun, Anti-GMO, etc. I kind of just bounce around depending on the topic. I do believe everyone should have the right to affordable Healthcare though. So while this book isn't really directed at me in that regard, I actually found a lot of useful information in it. And I didn't even read it by choice, my boss had me read it as background for part of a blog post he wanted written for the company website.

The ObamaCare Survival Guide isn't really a Survival Guide. So I do think it's misnamed. But the sub-title of "The Affordable Care Act and What It Means for You and Your Healthcare" is actually a little more accurate. This is a brief (although biased) guide to the new Healthcare laws coming into effect. There are several different sections; "Welcome to ObamaCare", "ObamaCare: What It Means for You", "ObamaCare: A Multiyear Timetable", "Heath Insurance: Radical Changes Ahead", "The Individual Mandate", "The Expansion of Medicaid", "Health Insurance Exchanges", "Incentives for Small Businesses", "More Benefits, Higher Costs", "Turning the Screws on Medicare", "Cost Control Experiments", "Making Americans Healthier", "Long-term Care", "ObamaCare, Etc.", "ObamaCare's Price Tag", "Protect Yourself Against ObamaCare", and the appendices. As you can tell from the titles of these chapters, the books tries to go into explanation on each part of the new Healthcare law. A lot of it is summary and supposition, but there are genuine facts from the law in here. I especially found the section on Long-Term care to be informative. Especially where it described the new laws that would monitor care at Nursing Homes and make a report available to the public. Every section had charts showing the allocation of pay, the differences in income for applying for help at the new Healthcare exchanges that will be set up, and current Insurance enrollment figures.

Ultimately though, this book is biased. And it's ok to write a biased book. Even though I may not agree with the author, I still appreciate the fact that he did include real facts with his opinions. He just has a different interpretation than I do, and on some things, I actually even agreed with him. I do commend the fact that he took time to point out good aspects of the Healthcare bill, in addition to his complaints and theories on the problems of the bill.

The format of the book was easy to read, and in language that most anyone could understand. The subjects were sorted neatly and transitioning from chapter to chapter was seamless. While it wasn't the Survival Guide the title says it is, this is, as said before, a brief summary of the Healthcare act. I do like that the book was separated into Parts, then into chapters, and then within each chapter it had certain sections highlighted so you can easily find what you are looking for. But don't go looking on strategies to get around the new Healthcare Act in this book, that's not what it was designed to do, despite the title. I think there will be a lot of disappointed people who pick up this book expecting it to be something it isn't. I do have to say that I would have liked to see more information. I know I said there was some in here, but it had the capacity for being much more informative than it actually was. A little less personal opinion and a little more facts would have really made this book a force to be reckoned with.

This gets three stars from me. It was a nice brief overview splattered with personal opinion. But at 200+ pages it could have contained more factual evidence than it did. But it's still a good beginner's book for those looking at the Healthcare law and I can see it being very popular with those people who are not enthused with the new policy.

ObamaCare Survival Guide
Copyright 2013
241 pages

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