“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.”

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“‘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.”

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“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. “

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“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?”

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“Seventy-five percent of respondents to the Health Care Reform Readiness Survey said they believe healthcare costs will increase due to healthcare reform; 43 percent said they expect the increase to be significant. The Health Care Reform Readiness Survey, released by Buck Consultants, a human resource and benefits consulting firm that is a subsidiary of A Xerox Company, is based on responses from more than 200 professionals at healthcare organizations in the United States.”

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“Is employer-sponsored health insurance on life support? A new survey shows that one out of every 10 midsized and large companies say they’ll stop offering health insurance once federal insurance exchanges kick off in 2014, according to the survey, which was conducted by consulting firm Tower Watson.”

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“CMS’s effort, launched by Obamacare, to use the leverage of Medicare reimbursement to impose and control a favored model of health care delivery is bound to fail, but only after increasing the angst of providers and patients and dissipating large amounts of resources—money, time, and brainpower. It blocks the development of other ideas for reforming health care delivery. However, changes in the proposed regulations to fix the anomalies and problems discussed above, and numerous other provisions like them not discussed here, would not be sufficient to rescue the scheme. The Shared Savings Program and its ACOs are fatally flawed by the overweening assumptions embedded in the PPACA itself.”

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“This afternoon, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta ruled that the individual mandate in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), more commonly known as Obamacare, is unconstitutional. The carefully worded and thorough (over 300 page) set of opinions may be a bit mind-numbing for the uninitiated, but they are a joy to read for those of us who think the words of the Constitution actually mean something beyond whatever an activist Congress, President, and pliant judge want them to mean.”

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“Glenn Morton, the author of the new book Passing Obamacare, has worked for nearly two decades in the health-insurance business, most recently as a broker who helps employers find better deals among providers. In a discussion with Reason’s Nick Gillespie, Morton adds another problem with recently released Obamacare rules: The mandate to reduce the percentage of insurance costs that go to administrative costs effectively means that insurance brokers’ commissions will be either drastically cut or reduced altogether. If brokers’ role in hunting for better coverage plans is eviscerated, argues Morton, companies will lose their main ally in the search for affordable and dependable coverage plans.”

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“But when applied from on high by government bureaucrats, CER can yield dangerous results.
A new study from my Pacific Research Institute colleague Dr. Ben Zycher indicates that the government-led CER process will depress investment in pharmaceutical and medical device research and development by 10% to 12% — about $10 billion per year.
Less investment in R&D means fewer revolutionary medical advances that can improve or extend our lives.”

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