Health

Anti-Obamacare Horror Story Ad is Debunked (Video)

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A new anti-Obamacare ad produced by Americans for Prosperity, which is funded by the billionaire Kock brothers, recently aired but has numerous logical problems.

The ad (video below) attacks the Affordable Care Act and Rep. Gary Peters, D-Mich., who is running for the U.S. Senate.

The ad features a Michigan resident named Julia Boonstra who has leukemia.

Boonstra says in the ad that she had a "wonderful doctor and a great health care plan," but received a letter saying that her insurance was canceled because of "Obamacare."

“Now, the out-of-pocket costs are so high, it’s unaffordable," adds Boonstra. "If I do not receive my medication, I will die. I believed the president. I believed I could keep my health insurance plan. I feel lied to. It’s heartbreaking for me. Congressman Peters, your decision to vote Obamacare jeopardized my health.”

However, The Washington Post reports that Boonstra didn't mention in the ad that she was able to find a Blue Cross Blue Shield plan that included her "wonderful doctor," which the AFP later confirmed.

Boonstra claims in the ad that her costs are "unaffordable" but said she was paying the costs at a GOP news conference only a month ago: “I’m paying a higher cost now as far as out of pocket costs and the coverage is just not the same.” 

According to the Detroit News, "[Boonstra] said she was [originally] covered under a Blue Care Network private plan with a $1,100-a-month premium but low out-of-pocket costs ... Ultimately, she enrolled in a new Blue Cross Blue Shield plan through an agent where her premiums were cut in half at $571, but she pays higher out-of-pocket costs. She’s still seeing her U-M oncologist."

But Boonstra doesn't mention in the ad that her monthly premium costs were cut in half by the ACA.

Boonstra refused to speak to The Washington Post directly, for reasons unknown, but she did pass on a statement via the AFP: “My plan, the premiums are half, but the out‑of‑pocket costs are so high that for me, it’s unaffordable. My coverage is 80/20. Blood work, I’m paying 20 percent. If I needed a bone marrow transplant, I would only be covered 80 percent. Everything, everything I do now, I have to pay a percentage of.”

However, Boonstra failed to mention when she hits the maximum out-of-pocket maximum of $6,350 for an individual plan, under the ACA, she will no longer pay any more money.

When it comes to specifics, AFP refused to provide documentation showing how Boonstra's costs have increased, reports The Hill.

The Washington Post calculated that in the long run, Boonstra will not pay more than she previously did and will likely have better coverage because of the maximum out-of-pocket maximum of $6,350.

Mother Jones notes, "This ad implies that Boonstra flatly can't afford coverage anymore. It implies that she could no longer see her old doctor. It implies that Obamacare is killing her. None of this is true. Boonstra's care is better and cheaper than it was before. The only downside is that her payments are slightly more erratic than in the past."

Sources: Mother Jones, The Washington Post, Detroit News, The Hill

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