August 3 2010
Kevin Hassett's column for Bloomberg today is right on point about the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Like a lot of recently curious analysts, he took the time to examine the real effects of this health care reform. Rather than simplifying our lives and making insurance more affordable and accessible, this Act makes government bigger and more complicated. According to Hassett:
The new law creates 68 grant programs, 47 bureaucratic entities, 29 demonstration or pilot programs, six regulatory systems, six compliance standards and two entitlements.
On top of all that, the reform isn't even going to do what it was intended to do: make health care more affordable and accessible for everyone.
Based on the administration's own numbers, as many as 117 million people might have to change their health plans by 2013 as their employer-provided coverage loses its grandfathered status and becomes subject to the new Obamacare mandates.
Hassett goes on to explain that the approximately 16 million people who will now (not necessarily of their own will) be enrolled in Medicaid will have their insurance financed by cuts made to the Medicare Advantage program:
To pay for this expansion, the bill takes $529 billion from Medicare, with roughly 39 percent of the cut coming from the Medicare Advantage program. This represents a large transfer of resources, sacrificing the care of the elderly in order to increase the Medicaid rolls.
So let me get this straight - we're going to take $529 billion from Medicare, and another additional $569 billion from taxpayers to create 47 new bureaucratic entities and simultaneously take 117 million people off of their current insurance plans. That's a lot of very discouraging numbers.
If health care reform is really going to be this inefficient, why are we moving ahead with it? Aside from the fact that health insurance mandates may be unconstitutional, the rest of the plans laid by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act don't make sense. A short time from now, many Americans will be looking at their tax and insurance bills wishing that this legislation had never happened.