The Affordable Care Act — also known as Obamacare — has generated passionate debate among Americans for and against the new federal law.
In Congress, inane partisanship stemming from the law even led to an unnecessary, partial government shutdown. Tea Party Republicans instrumental in that development should know the shutdown did nothing to derail the new health-care law because its funds aren't dependent on the congressional budget process.
Meanwhile, Americans still have plenty of questions about a law that went into effect Oct. 1.
Locally, look for a one-day series of presentations to help.
The Garden City Area Chamber of Commerce, Downtown Vision, city of Garden City and Garden City Community College have organized sessions with presenter Sheldon Weisgrau, who will address "What You Really Need to Know about ACA."
Weisgrau, director of the Health Reform Resource Project, will outline the impact of the law on consumers, health-care providers and businesses, and answer questions during the sessions Tuesday in Garden City.
Weisgrau has worked in the public, private and nonprofit sectors on delivery of health-care services in rural and underserved communities, and on issues involving health-care consumers, policymakers and providers.
The Tuesday sessions, all open to the public, are scheduled for 7:30 a.m. in the Pauline Joyce Fine Arts Auditorium at GCCC; 1:30 p.m. in the city commission room of the City Administrative Center; and 7 p.m. at GCCC's Pauline Joyce Auditorium. The city session will be televised on cable channel 8.
With ACA enrollment under way, consumers need objective, truthful information on particulars of a law presented inaccurately by many intent on seeing it repealed.
Unfortunately, Congress' partisan bickering has stymied any progress toward making the ACA a more workable program for everyone. Federal lawmakers interested in the welfare of those they serve should work together on improving a system that gives more people access to health care.
Americans deserve no less.
At the same time, all consumers need to better understand the law and how it would affect them.
Tuesday's sessions in Garden City should help on the local front.