Much like the U.S. Supreme Court’s 5-4 decision in favor of President Barack Obama’s 2010 Affordable Care Act, opinions at the University of St. Thomas are mixed about Thursday’s ruling.
The most controversial aspect, the individual mandate requiring Americans to have health insurance, was ruled valid as a tax; the decision affects how people will receive health care and medicine.
Junior Chet Forsman is pleased with the decision.
“Personally, I think it’s good that more people have access to health care,” Forsman said.
Director of Health Services Madonna McDermott said that the ruling is beneficial for students, especially those with a pre-existing condition.
“I believe it helps keep health insurance affordable for our students,” McDermott said. “Sometimes they wouldn’t be able to get a good health insurance plan because of a pre-existing condition … they wouldn’t be able to get insurance, or they’d have to pay a lot of money.”
However, junior Derek Hilgers worries about future consequences.
“There’s always a concern that if everyone is forced to get health insurance then the insurance companies will exploit that and raise costs,” Hilgers said.
Professor of ethics and business law Dawn Elm said the ruling does affect a citizen’s freedom of choice. However, in order for the United States’ free market to function, Elm said there needs to be a health care safety net.
“If in the free market we had no intervention or regulation of any kind, there would people who would die because they don’t have health care,” Elm said.
Junior Rebecca Ross said there are logical arguments on both sides of the Supreme Court’s decision.
“It’s good that everyone with get health care,” Ross said. “Even though things would be more expensive … it’s a necessary evil.”
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