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  • Government Healthcare is Breech of Contract September 24, 2014
    by G. Keith Smith, MD One of the smartest people I have ever met is a property and contracts lawyer, someone from whom I have gleaned countless and valuable insights over the years.  He has advised me, among other things, …
  • Dr. Alieta Eck Campaign Update September 24, 2014
    Dr. Eck http://EckForCongress.com speaks to colleagues at AAPS 71st annual meeting on September 5, 2014.
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    Richard Amerling, MD presents at the 71st Annual Meeting of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, September 5, 2014.
  • Flaw In Federal Software Lets Employers Offer Plans Without Hospital Benefits September 19, 2014
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  • Ralph Weber Talks About Cost Shifting – Video September 17, 2014
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  • Here’s The Thing #4 Cost Shifting HD September 17, 2014
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    Parvez Dara, MD, FACP, MBA, author of http://jedismedicine.blogspot.com/, speaks at the AAPS 71st Annual Meeting in Charleston, SC.
  • The Progressive Train Wreck: From Medicare to HillaryCare to ObamaCare September 15, 2014
    Jane M Orient, MD presents at the AAPS 71st annual meeting, September 5, 2014, Charleston, SC.
  • Varying Prices for Lab Tests are Absurd September 15, 2014
    by Adrienne Snavely The health needs of a community vary by market. If you cannot find what you need or afford it, you should have the opportunity and information to go elsewhere without being penalized. A patient in Chicago went …
  • The Future Of Medicare September 14, 2014
    Lawrence R. Huntoon, MD, PhD presents at the 71st Annual Meeting of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, September 6, 2014, Charleston, South Carolina.
  • Unethical ABMS behaviors and the MOC Scam: How It Will Be Used to Control Medical Practice September 13, 2014
    Paul Kempen, MD, PhD presenting at 71st annual meeting of AAPS, September 6, 2014, Charleston, SC.
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    by Sue Redmond First, let’s ask where did the idea for the low diet come from? In the late 50’s and early 60’s the AMA worked on a theory and published a report that a low fat diet could help …
  • EHR: Remote Control – Craig M. Wax, D.O. September 12, 2014
    Dr. Wax of http://ip4pi.wordpress.com examines how government-controlled electronic health records undermine quality medical care and patient privacy. Presentation at 71st Annual AAPS Meeting Sept. 4-6, 2014.
  • Evidence-Based Medicine as Junk Science — Twila Brase RN September 11, 2014
    Twila Brase, President of http://CCHFreedom.org outlines how so-called evidence-based medicine (EBM) encourages one-size-fits-all healthcare, is a tool for increased control by insurance companies and the government, and is detrimental to individualized patient care.
  • What ObamaCare Means for Patients September 11, 2014
    Kris Held, MD addresses the 71st Annual Meeting of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, September 4, 2014 in Charleston, SC.
  • Private Health Care is Individualized Care, Not Public Health — Richard Amerling, MD September 10, 2014
    AAPS President-Elect Richard Amerling, MD opens the 71st Annual Meeting, Sept. 4, 2014, Charleston, SC.
  • Come Together – The Kidney Stones September 10, 2014

Medicare Actuary: Obamacare Will Triple the Growth Rate of Net Insurance Costs

Medicare Actuary: Obamacare Will Triple the Growth Rate of Net Insurance Costs

Ralph Note: Any thinking person knew this, which is why they had to rush it through before anyone read it and figured it out. That’s why it was a 2,700 page bill, because it would take longer to figure it out. This is typical of politics. I’m so tired of all of the back room deals. What have the got to hide?

WASHINGTON - JANUARY 26:  Richard Foster, chie...Medicare Actuary Richard Foster. Image by Getty Images via @daylife.

Remember when the President promised that Obamacare would reduce the cost of health insurance? “Under [our] plan, if you like your current health insurance, nothing changes, except your costs will go down by as much as $2,500 per year,” said Obama in 2008. The law, like Romneycare in Massachusetts, would magically eliminate the mythical “free-rider problem” by massively subsidizing health spending for the lower middle class.

Well, the Office of the Actuary in the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services recently put out its annual projections of national health care spending. And, contrary to the President, the actuaries find that Obamacare will dramatically increase the near-term growth rate of health care costs. In 2014, the actuaries find that growth in the net cost of health insurance will increase by nearly 14 percent, compared to 3.5% if PPACA had never passed. The growth rate of private insurance costs will rise to 9.4 percent, from 5.0 percent under prior law: an 88% increase.

Here is a chart that the Office of the Actuary published in the July 2011 issue of Health Affairs. The blue bars represent the Office’s projected spending growth under prior law, and the red bars represent the growth under Obamacare:

The Office of the Actuary does project that growth in private premiums will moderate a bit after 2014, but for reasons the Obama administration won’t like, given its recent harassment of McKinsey & Co.:

For 2015–20, growth in private health insurance premiums is expected to slow somewhat and average 5.6 percent annually. Underlying this expectation is that some employers of low-wage workers will stop offering health coverage (and many of their employees will move to the exchange plans, while others move into Medicaid or become uninsured).

There is another provision of PPACA that the Office of the Actuary believes will help reduce health spending: the “Cadillac tax” on high-cost insurance plans, which comes into effect in 2018. As I’ve written many times, a law that solely consisted of equalizing the tax treatment of employer-sponsored and individually-purchased health plans would have done more for health reform than the entirety of Obamacare.

Unfortunately, that’s not how it played out. Instead, we doubled down on a failed system of subsidies, mandates, and controls. Encouraging more health spending is not the way to curb its growth. As P.J. O’Rourke memorably put it in 1993, “If you think health care is expensive now, wait until you see what it costs when it’s free.”

UPDATE: In the comments below, rz00 and ritacornymichael plausibly argue that I am eliding the difference between overall insurance costs and per-capita insurance costs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



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