A new government report estimates that the health care overhaul passed in March won't stem the country's ballooning medical costs. According to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Americans on average will spend $256 more per year in 2019 than they would have had the bill not passed. To some, the additional cost is a small price to pay for expanding coverage for the uninsured. Opponents of the bill note that Democrats insisted health care reform would reduce, not increase, costs.
Bad News for Dems, writes Ben Fischer at Washington Business Journal: "Politically speaking, it's bad news for Democrats and other backers of the bill, because the report undercuts one of the original, central arguments in favor of health care reform is that it would lower overall health care spending. The White House spun the numbers their way in a blog post this morning. Politico reported in August that Democratic allies are being cautioned against claiming 'the law will reduce costs and [the] deficit.'"
- Bad News? This Is Good News, observes Igor Volsky at Think Progress: "health care costs... will grow only 'slightly faster than projected under prior law - at an annual rate of 6.3 percent, rather than 6.1 percent' -- a fairly small price to pay for providing insurance coverage to 32.5 million more Americans."
- This Is Outrageous, writes William Teach at Right Wing News: "Time and time again, we were all told that the still incredibly unpopular legislation would lower costs. Guess it won't. If only some people had spoken out over the 8 months it was debated."
- This Is No Reason to Feel Bad About Health Reform, writes Meredith Hughes at the New America Foundation: "It's important to remember the cost of doing nothing on health care. Without reform, costs will continue to rise for everyone, coverage would erode, and care quality would remain inconsistent. With reform, new pilot programs will start to find innovative ways to improve health care quality and delivery."
- More Costs on the Way Too writes Ed Morrissey at Hot Air: "The Journal reported earlier this week that insurers have already begun raising premiums in response to the front-loading of ObamaCare benefit mandates by the White House. That report sent Democrats into fits of anger, threatening to 'ratchet up pressure; on insurers. Rep. Pete Stark (D-CA) blamed 'greed' for price increases instead of the higher costs imposed by the mandates -- a completely predictable consequence of adding more mandates to insurance coverage. Perhaps these same Democrats can put pressure on themselves to explain once again how the higher costs in ObamaCare meets their promise of bending the cost curve downward."
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
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