Tuesday, September 4, 2012

The Health Care Dirty Dozen

Twelve Things (Still) Wrong with ObamaCare
Good summary of what we are faced with in just a small part of the monstrosity we call Obamacare.  Go to the original article  for details of each point.
  • 1. Imposes a Bevy of New Taxes.
  • 2. Expands a Nation of Takers.
  • 3. Creates a Maze of Cross Subsidies.
  • 4. Hands Control to Unelected Bureaucrats.
  • 5. Empowers the IRS.
  • 6. Imposes Perverse Economic Incentives.
  • 7. Explodes Health Care Spending.
  • 8. Enhances Rationing under IPAB. When health care spending explodes, Washington will scramble to find a way to contain what wasn’t supposed to happen in the first place.The reason is that the government will be subsidizing so many people that even minor increases in health care costs will have huge federal budget implications. The Obama administration has committed U.S. taxpayers to hundreds of billions in health care subsidies that will strain an already drained federal budget. That means that cuts in care and services will be made.Just consider Massachusetts, which adopted a prequel to ObamaCare in 2006. Although there were promises then, just as with ObamaCare today, that spending would decline, that hasn’t happened. So the state has passed legislation creating a board to oversee health care prices and to enforce arbitrary limits. As the Wall Street Journal writes, “An 11-member board known as the Health Policy Commission will use the data to set and enforce rules to ensure that total Massachusetts health spending, public and private, grows no more than projected gross state product through 2017, and 0.5 percentage points lower thereafter.” [Emphasis in original]
    The mechanism to make those cuts in ObamaCare will likely be the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB). While the IPAB is only making recommendations for Medicare, that could change, either explicitly or implicitly. For example, Medicare sets the prices the government will pay for both hospital procedures (Diagnosis Related Groups, or DRGs) and physician visits (Resource-Based Relative-Value Scale, or RBRVS). Because Medicare is such a large payer, its arbitrarily set prices become a benchmark for private sector insurers. In addition, private insurers often wait until Medicare agrees to cover certain therapies and prescription drugs before they do. It is probable that IPAB decisions will similarly become the benchmark for what therapies and drugs private insurers will cover and how much they will pay.
  • 9. Allows Fewer Health Insurance Options.
  • 10. Creates More Inefficiency.
  • 11. Includes Pork and Calls It Prevention.
  • 12. Cooks the Medicare Books.
ObamaCare’s Greatest Failure.
ObamaCare imposes a mid-20th century health insurance model on a 21st century global economy.
The Internet brings consumers countless products and services from countless vendors; ObamaCare provides four choices from a handful of insurers.
Technology creates fast-paced health care changes while ObamaCare’s 2,700 pages ties up almost everything in the snail-paced legislative and bureaucratic processes.
Innovators and entrepreneurs are asking what consumers want; ObamaCare tells both patients and providers what they can and can’t have.
The Affordable Care Act looks backward—to the days of big-government and grand social schemes. It is the wrong policy for the dynamic and fast-paced 21st century. It is an albatross fit for 1960, not 2012.
Read full IPI article here.

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