ObamaCare’s impact on health costs.

“Two of the central promises of President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul law are unlikely to be fulfilled, Medicare’s independent economic expert told Congress on Wednesday.
The landmark legislation probably won’t hold costs down, and it won’t let everybody keep their current health insurance if they like it, Chief Actuary Richard Foster told the House Budget Committee.”

“A set of provisions included in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) gives the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) sweeping new powers to impose a wide range of detailed benefit requirements on employer-sponsored health plans and major medical policies sold by health insurers. This will effectively make all health insurance benefits uniform—depriving patients of choices—increase the cost of coverage for tens of millions of Americans, and stifle insurance innovation.”

“Tomorrow night the House of Representatives will debate the repeal of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), what many call ‘ObamaCare.’ Some critics complain that this is a futile exercise because there is little chance of short-term success. But that’s the wrong way to look at it.”

“On the eve of a House vote to repeal ObamaCare, the Department of Health and Human Services has released a report claiming that if repeal succeeds, ‘1 in 2 non-elderly Americans could be denied coverage or charged more due to a pre-existing condition.’ A few problems with that claim…”

“Hayek’s most famous insight, about the indispensible informational function of the price mechanism, in his most famous paper, ‘The Use of Knowledge in Society’, comes in the course of an argument to the effect that central economic planning boards are bound to fail. On it’s face, it’s hard to agree that the Affordable Care Act does much to incorporate the fundamental Hayekian lesson when one of its key provisions is the establishment of the Independent Payment Advisory Board, a sort of central price-setting committee thought by its advocates necessary to contain the runaway cost of the American health-care system.”

ObamaCare gives the government sweeping new powers to micromanage insurance policies. Their one-size-fits-all decisions are almost guaranteed to fail. “Draw up a package that is too bare-bones, and millions of Americans could be deprived of meaningful health-care coverage when they need it most – undercutting a central goal of the new law. Add in too many expensive benefits, and premiums could spike to unaffordable levels.”

“The long-term care pharmacy lobby says a proposed regulation that aims to reduce waste would end up raising prices for the Medicare Part D prescription program and taxpayers with little benefit to show for it.”

“Calling these rules ‘consumer protections’ implies that the people harmed don’t matter, or one has clairvoyance to know that the benefits outweigh the costs.
ObamaCare supporters should call these supposed consumer protections what they are: regulations that can hurt even more than they help.”

“Regional variation in Medicare spending is not correlated with variation in non-Medicare spending, and variation in non-Medicare spending is associated with measures of disease burden and health status. The data indicate that something is deeply wrong not with the doctors or the patients but with Medicare’s payment system, service mix, and incentives.”

“Thanks to Obamacare, the one bright light in many people’s complicated and burdensome health-care spending plans is about to be taken away. That little bit of tax-free medical spending that some of us have enjoyed for years, the health savings plans and the pretax money they provided for over-the-counter remedies . . . cough syrup, saline solution and even toothpaste . . . now will require a doctor’s note.”