• Heritage Action
  • More
  • Commentary posted July 7, 2011 by Brian Blase, Paul L. Winfree Health-Care Legislation Will Take Millions Off the Tax Rolls

    Every April 15, Americans pay closer attention to the cost of government, with millions either receiving refunds or writing checks to the IRS. But an unsettling trend has emerged over the last two decades: fewer American households are paying anything at all for the cost of government. Last year, for the first time since the Great Depression, Americans received more…

  • WebMemo posted May 6, 2011 by Brian Blase Solving the National Medicaid Crisis

    On April 15, the House of Representatives passed a budget that addresses the Medicaid crisis. Introduced by Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan (R–WI), it repeals Obamacare and its costly Medicaid expansion and puts Medicaid on a more fiscally sustainable path. Ryan’s Medicaid reform ends the open-ended federal reimbursement of state Medicaid spending and allows states…

  • Backgrounder posted May 5, 2011 by Brian Blase Medicaid Provides Poor Quality Care: What the Research Shows

    Abstract: While targeted public assistance can work, Medicaid has become far too large and unwieldy to serve those who truly need it. A variety of research shows that Americans enrolled in Medicaid have less access to health care, and when they do receive care, the quality is often inferior to the care provided to other similar patients. This Heritage Foundation paper…

  • Commentary posted March 30, 2011 by Brian Blase Obamacare Has CLASS, But Actuaries See Problems

    Tucked in the 2,800 pages of Obamacare was the Community Living Assistance Services and Support (CLASS) program — a new entitlement to taxpayer-supported long-term care. It’s set to begin next year. The American Academy of Actuaries, a collection of serious nonpartisan number crunchers has decried CLASS as unsustainable. The central reason: CLASS is a…

  • Commentary posted March 21, 2011 by Brian Blase Health-Care Law Expands Flawed Medicaid Program

    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is certainly bad public policy. One of the law's worst provisions is a $100 billion annual increase in Medicaid spending. Medicaid was meant to be a small safety-net program. But now, nearly one in five Americans enroll in Medicaid at some point in a given year, which exacerbates dependence upon government and places an…

  • Commentary posted March 19, 2011 by Brian Blase Employer Mandate Will Do Harm

    While recent attention on The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act has focused on its constitutional problems, Americans must not forget its damaging policy implications. Some of the most harmful and expensive components are the subsidies for Americans to purchase health insurance in newly created insurance exchanges. These generous subsidies (households of four…

  • Backgrounder posted March 17, 2011 by Brian Blase Obamacare: The One-Year Checkup

    Abstract: On its one-year anniversary, Obamacare’s unpopularity is growing. Its hodgepodge of mandates and regulations have reduced competition in health insurance markets and increased the cost of coverage. Overall, Obamacare has increased government control of Americans’ health care choices and limited consumer choice. The more than 1,000 waivers already granted tacitly…

  • WebMemo posted March 16, 2011 by Brian Blase, John S. Hoff Secretary Sebelius Cannot Fix CLASS

    Among Obamacare’s hundreds of pages was tucked a new government-run long-term care program, the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports (CLASS) Program.[1] CLASS was poorly designed, and actuaries criticized it as being unsustainable well before the passage of Obamacare.[2] It appears from three recent congressional appearances by Health and Human Services (HHS)…

  • Commentary posted March 2, 2011 by Brian Blase States Bleeding From Medicaid Need Flexibility

    States are on a collision course with fiscal reality. They’ll crash on July 1, when the extra Medicaid money they’ve been getting from the federal “stimulus” disappears. The generous federal Medicaid subsidy has led to a large expansion of Medicaid, the joint federal-state health program originally aimed at serving the poor. The recession has further swelled the…

  • WebMemo posted February 28, 2011 by Brian Blase How States Can Survive the Medicaid Crisis

    Along with the exploding costs of public-sector benefit packages, managing Medicaid is the greatest challenge confronting the nation’s governors and state legislative bodies. About 16 percent of the nation’s population is currently enrolled in Medicaid, the joint federal–state program for certain categories of mostly poor individuals. State budgets are stressed from…

  • Commentary posted January 31, 2011 by Brian Blase Repealing New Entitlement Spending will Reduce Deficit

    In his State of the Union address, President Obama said that repealing his health-care law would increase the deficit by $230 billion. While technically true according to Congressional Budget Office estimates, this statement is misleading. In CBO’s own words: “(the) legislation contained a set of provisions ... which CBO and (Joint Committee on Taxation) estimated…

  • WebMemo posted January 20, 2011 by Brian Blase, Paul L. Winfree Obamacare and Health Subsidies: Expanding Perverse Incentives for Employers and Employees

    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA)[1] offers subsidies for most individuals who purchase insurance in the newly created health insurance exchanges—a premium assistance subsidy and a cost-sharing subsidy. These subsidies are the most expensive component of the overhaul, costing over $460 billion by 2019. Perhaps even more problematic, they will cause…

  • WebMemo posted January 19, 2011 by Brian Blase Obamacare and the CLASS Act: Creating a Long-Term Care Entitlement Burden

    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA)[1] created a new entitlement program, the Community Living Assistance Services and Support (CLASS) Program, to provide assistance for individuals who have difficulty with activities of daily living[2] and need long-term care (LTC) services.[3] But actuaries who have analyzed CLASS believe it is poorly designed…

  • WebMemo posted January 19, 2011 by Brian Blase Obamacare and the Employer Mandate: Cutting Jobs and Wages

    One of the central goals of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA)[1] was to increase the number of individuals with health insurance coverage. To encourage employers to offer coverage, the new law creates a tax penalty on firms with more than 50 workers that fail to provide “adequate” coverage for their employees. The result is government intrusion into…

  • WebMemo posted January 19, 2011 by Brian Blase Obamacare and Medicaid: Expanding a Broken Entitlement and Busting State Budgets

    Roughly half of the anticipated gains in insurance coverage from the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA)[1] are achieved through a massive expansion of Medicaid, the joint federal–state health insurance program for the poor. The Medicaid program, with its soaring price tag and dubious level of care for recipients, is in serious need of reform, not…