Rules forcing insurers to cover certain procedures without any out-of-pocket costs doesn’t make them free as most reports claim, it just makes them pre-paid. “Each use of ‘free’ and ‘no cost’ in these excerpts is false, even within its original context. There’s no such thing as a free lunch. Everything has a cost. No government can change that. Mandating that insurers cover certain services does not magically make them free. Consumers still pay, just in the form of higher health insurance premiums and lower wages.”

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ObamaCare’s new preventive services guidelines creates huge incentives for medical lobbyists to get their prefered treatments designated as preventive care. “When government agencies are making non-scientific value judgments–e.g., are these studies reliable enough to merit an A or B recommendation? what should be the thresholds for an A or B recommendation? will the benefits of mandating this coverage outweigh the costs?–politics does even better. Witness Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-Md) overruling a USPSTF recommendation when she ‘inserted an amendment in the [new] health-care law to explicitly cover regular mammograms for women between 40 and 50.'”

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ObamaCare lets the government define what is or isn’t “preventive care” and thus provided cost-free by insurers. While rulings were previously merely advisory, their increased role will subject them to substantial lobbying pressures, which could lead to politicized decision-making. “Under the new health care overhaul law, insurers will be required to pay fully for services that get an ‘A’ or ‘B’ recommendation from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, a volunteer group made up of primary care and public health experts. [I]t puts the group in the crosshairs of lobbyists and disease advocates eager to see their top priorities – including routine screening for Alzheimer’s disease, domestic violence, diabetes or HIV – become covered services. ‘It’s a wide-open door for lobbying,’ says Robert Laszewski, a health insurance industry consultant.”

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ObamaCare includes new mandates which require all insurance companies to provide “free” preventive care, with no co-pays or deductibles. Of course, patients will still be paying for it, but the costs will instead be built into increased insurance premiums to pay for the new requirements. A government board will be deciding what does or does not qualify as preventive. “The rules stipulate that no co-payments can be charged for tests and screenings recommended by the United States Preventive Services Task Force, an independent panel of scientific experts. The rules apply to new health plans that begin coverage after Sept. 23 and to existing health plans that make significant changes after that date. The administration said the requirements could increase premiums by 1.5 percent, on average.”

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“I think what is interesting is how poorly the law stacks up against its proponents’ own criteria. The new law fails to control rising health-care costs or increasing health-insurance premiums. In fact, the legislation will actually increase U.S. health-care spending by $311 billion over ten years. Insurance premiums will roughly double over the next six years, roughly what was expected before the law passed. It doesn’t restructure programs in a way to improve quality… By 2019, there will still be 21 million uninsured Americans, and nearly half of those who do get coverage under this law are merely thrown into Medicaid. Many other touted reforms come with surprisingly high price tags. For example, sure you can now keep your children on you insurance plan through age 26, but it will cost them an average of $3,380 per year per child in higher premiums. Even if you believed completely in President Obama’s goals, it’s hard to see what there is to like about this law.”

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“Is the IRS capable of handling all of its new responsibilities under ObamaCare? Not according to the National Taxpayer Advocate. A new report from the IRS watchdog says that your friendly neighborhood tax collectors are insufficiently prepared to carry out their duties under the new health care law, and will therefore require additional funding not included in the bill.”

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“Considering how dubious the public remains about Obamacare, there is every reason to believe the Republicans really did want an exchange with the candid, erudite Berwick. The recess appointment strongly suggests the White House simply did not want to have another fight over the contentious health-care issue.”

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“Unfortunately, Dr. Berwick’s prescription for reform – a bolder, more determined bureaucracy – is the wrong strategy for an industry that has labored under increasing government control for the past 50 years. Instead, health care is in desperate need of more consumer-driven innovations like the iPhone that have the potential to change the way we think about health and health care.”

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Elena Kagan has spent the last year as the Solicitor General of the United States, where she is one of the government’s chief advocates. If she were a Supreme Court justice, she might need to recuse herself from deciding the fate of ObamaCare. “Ms. Kagan would sit as Mr. Obama’s nominee on the nation’s highest Court on a case of momentous Constitutional importance. If there is any chance that the public will perceive her to have prejudged the case, or rubber-stamped the views of the President who appointed her, she will damage her own credibility as a Justice and that of the entire Court.”

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Maine’s Insurance Commissioner is requesting an exemption from the onerous new “medical loss ratio” regulations in ObamaCare. It would likely force one of the state’s larger insurers out of the market, greatly restricting choice and competition.

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