Dr. Don Berwick will now head the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid without Senate confirmation, or even a single hearing, after Obama’s recess appointment. “The recess appointment was somewhat unusual because the Senate is in recess for less than two weeks and senators were still waiting for Dr. Berwick to submit responses to some of their requests for information. No confirmation hearing has been held or scheduled.” Berwick would have had to face tough questions about his views on rationing and his support for the British socialized health system, which would have been difficult since ObamaCare was guaranteed to not limit Medicare benefits.
ObamaCare is predicted to result in over 30 million more Americans getting insurance, but what exactly does that mean if they don’t have access to actual medical care? Emergency rooms are expected to be severely overcrowded because of the law, even though they are currently over capacity. “The biggest users of emergency rooms by far are Medicaid recipients. And the new health insurance law will increase their ranks by about 16 million. Medicaid is the state and federal program for low-income families and the disabled. And many family doctors limit the number of Medicaid patients they take because of low government reimbursements.”
The history of federal health-care programs shows that costs have surpassed estimates by tremendous margins. The exception has been the Medicare prescription drug program, which has controlled costs by injecting the sort of private competition and choice that ObamaCare would dramatically diminish.
ObamaCare’s mandate that states reimburse primary-care doctors under Medicaid at the same rate as under Medicare, creates a funding cliff in 2015 — when the federal government’s promise to pick up the tab would expire, leaving states on the hook for an estimated $5.5 billion a year.
If not repealed, ObamaCare would expand and cement a system that is replete with fraud, without getting serious about reducing that fraud.
Medicaid mandates under Obamacare leave states with an unpleasant choice.
President Obama’s pick to head Medicare and Medicaid highlights the choice we face regarding Obamacare: repeal or rationed care.
Richard Epstein argues that ObamaCare would unconstitutionally coerce the states.
The Senate bill, which became the enacted version of Obamacare (in connection with the “reconciliation package”), was never intended to be final law — and it reads like it.
Those concerned that ObamaCare would produce an American health-care system that’s all-too-similar to Britain’s National Health Service will find no solace in President Obama’s nomination of Donald Berwick, Harvard professor and staunch advocate of the NHS, to head the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.