Issue Brief posted February 11, 2014
“Junk” Health Plans and Other Obamacare Insurance Myths
Obamacare affects nearly all areas of health care, but the most disruptive provisions of the law affect insurance sold in the individual market. In 2013, at least 4.7 million policyholders across 31 states and the District of Columbia were notified that their current coverage was being discontinued. The number is likely even higher, since data were not available for 19…
Backgrounder posted February 3, 2014
CBO Confirms: Medicare Premium Support Means Savings for Taxpayers and Seniors
A major report by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) confirms that Medicare premium support (a defined-contribution system of health-plan financing) would make the financially troubled federal program more fiscally sustainable.
The CBO finds that, in a new competitive system of health plans, private plans can offer the same benefit and services as traditional…
Issue Brief posted January 24, 2014
Replacing the Medicare SGR: Getting the Policy and the Financing Right
This year, Medicare physicians face a 24 percent pay cut. The reason: Congress updates Medicare doctors’ payments by a formula called the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR). While complex, the SGR formula attempts to limit the growth in Medicare physician payment to growth in gross domestic product (GDP). If physician payments are less than GDP growth in any given year, then…
Backgrounder posted December 20, 2013
Compelling Evidence Makes the Case for a Market-Driven Health Care System
The United States does not have a private-sector health insurance system, let alone a functioning competitive market for insurance or health services. In fact, the federal government has been the dominant force in American health care for decades, long before the recent massive expansion of the government’s role in the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act…
Issue Brief posted December 18, 2013
Ten Broken Obamacare Promises
Since the passage of Obamacare in 2010, many of the President’s famous promises have been routinely broken. As he so ironically threatened in 2009, “If you misrepresent what’s in this plan, we will call you out.” To that end, here are 10 promises of Obamacare that have already proved to be broken.
Promise #1: “If you like your health care plan, you’ll be able to keep…
Backgrounder posted November 21, 2013
How Obamacare Undermines American Values: Penalizing Work, Marriage, Citizenship, and the Disabled
”We are a compassionate nation,” President Barack Obama recently stated in his weekly radio address, talking about the health care law—implying that critics of Obamacare are not. Nothing could be further from the truth. Obamacare itself is an uncompassionate law.
While President Obama and his fellow liberals may have held the best of intentions while ramming Obamacare…
Backgrounder posted November 20, 2013
What Obamacare’s Pay-For-Performance Programs Mean for Health Care Quality
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) of 2010 creates several new Medicare programs intended to improve health care quality, using “pay-for-performance” payment strategies to put financial pressure on medical providers. In such programs, reimbursement reflects provider performance on quality metrics based on adherence to certain care processes, scores on…
Issue Brief posted November 12, 2013
Principles for the Budget Conference
For the first time in years, lawmakers have agreed to convene in a budget conference to reconcile differences between their respective budget proposals, as presented by House Budget Committee chair Paul Ryan (R–WI) and Senate Budget Committee chair Patty Murray (D–WA). The two chambers’ budgets differ wildly in terms of taxes and the size of government.