“The health insurance rate-review regulation included in last year’s health care overhaul goes into effect this week… So how will it be determined if insurers are engaged in a ‘pattern or practice’ of ‘excessive or unjustified’ increases? However the authorities want. As CRS notes, ‘the terms “pattern” and “practice” are not defined by law.’ If those recommendations are anything like previous state-based efforts to regulate health insurance, they’ll probably be inconsistent and inscrutable.”Details
“President Obama also promised that premiums wouldn’t rise under Obamacare. The law, we were told, was going to lower premiums for families by as much as $2,500. The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality analyzed the ten largest states’ average premiums in 2010. On average, the premiums for a family plan rose 6.5 percent. Here in Texas, the average premium for a family plan jumped by more than $1,000.”Details
“Expensive technologies like proton beam therapy and hot chemo baths are among the reasons America’s health care spending is rising at an unsustainable clip and making the federal deficit so hard to tame.
But two of the nation’s top health care economists are expressing doubts that accountable care organizations — one of Obama administration’s most-hyped mechanisms to save money — will be able to overcome the medical system’s lust for the new new thing.”
“The best thing that Congress can do to unleash jobs creation is to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
The law is discouraging businesses from hiring. According to a recent U.S. Chamber of Commerce survey, 39 percent of small business owners say the law is either their greatest or second-greatest obstacle to new hiring.
The president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, Dennis Lockhart, says that ‘prominent’ among the obstacles to hiring is the ‘lack of clarity about the cost implications’ of the legislation.”
“In the early months of 2010, the economy was starting to show signs of life after the recession. Then Congress passed the president’s health-overhaul law. Debate over the ObamaCare law’s potential impact on hiring and the economy has been fierce from the start. The president promised it would be a boon to both; then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi said the law would create 400,000 jobs ‘almost immediately.’ Others argued the law would make businesses much less likely to hire new workers. That debate should now be over.”Details
“That law’s supposed beneficiaries are the uninsured. Yet 61 percent of them think the law will either not help them or will hurt them (see pie chart below). The main takeaway: Congress can repeal ObamaCare and its supposed beneficiaries won’t even care.”Details
“President Obama says he wants a grand bargain on the budget with no ideological ‘lines in the sand.’ Yet he insists that the costliest and most controversial program in decades — the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) — be taken off the table. That won’t fly. Congress should unwind the health law in three quick steps: freeze, investigate and replace.”Details
“‘Accountable care organizations’ is the health wonk phrase du jour. Obamacare’s advocates point to its support for ACOs as one of the important cost-control initiatives in the law. Except that, like nearly everything about Obamacare, the truth isn’t so simple. It turns out that the government’s idea of an accountable care organization is completely unworkable, to the point where nearly all leading health providers have declared it dead on arrival.”Details
“If anything, these numbers are low. A McKinsey survey of employers released in June found that nearly a third of employers are likely to drop their coverage thanks to ObamaCare. The Urban Institute suggested last year that, in the wake of the health care overhaul, ‘droves of employees—potentially tens of millions—are likely to shift out of employer-provided insurance.’ Former Congressional Budget Office director Douglas Holtz-Eakin found substantial incentives for employers to drop coverage, and estimated that as many as 35 million individuals could end up getting their health insurance from the government-run exchanges created by the health care overhaul. “Details
“Here’s one more nauseating outcome of that mentality: The Affordable Health Care and Reform Act includes a provision to subsidize coverage for early retirees in the public and private sector who quit working but aren’t old enough to qualify for Medicare… Who could have seen that coming? You offer a pile of free (i.e. taxpayer!) money for public and private companies and their workers to cash out – and they do! So who’s snagging the benefit so far?”Details