Thursday, April 3, 2014

Doctors Coburn And Barrasso: Obamacare Prognosis Not So Good

April 2, 2014 by Sam Rolley

prognoA report released by Senators Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) and John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), both of whom are physicians, this week gives President Barack Obama’s healthcare overhaul a checkup. The Senators’ prognosis for the health of Obamacare: “Outlook not so good.”

In their report, titled “Prognosis,” the lawmakers revisit Obamacare concerns outlined in previous reports dating back to 2010.

“For millions of Americans, Obamacare itself has become a pre-existing condition that has limited their access to quality, affordable health care,” Coburn said in a statement. “As we warned in our previous reports, Obamacare is fundamentally flawed. The law strengthens the hand of government and weakens the hand of doctors and patients. Obamacare is cutting choices, not costs, and costs will likely continue to rise.”

In 2010 the Senators claimed that President Obama’s “keep your plan” promise was bunk. In their report, the doctors say that their original diagnosis not only is confirmed but that the situation is actually worse than they had imagined.

“Despite President Obama and Democrats’ promises that ‘if you like your plan you can keep it,’ more than five million people in 35 states have lost their current health insurance plans due to Obamacare,” the report says.

The lawmakers go on to note that many employers have also chosen to drop coverage for part-time employees because of Obamacare. They also point out that once the deadline by which plans “grandfathered in” must meet additional healthcare requirements is reached in 2017 more cancellations will occur.

The report goes on to note that the lawmakers’ prediction that Obamacare would send healthcare costs through the roof has been vindicated.

They cite the following as evidence:

“Of the 51 states studied, all experienced health insurance rate increases, with 44 of those states experiencing triple digit percentage increases in premiums for the lowest priced coverage. Pre-ACA premiums average $62.00 monthly, while post-ACA premiums average $187.08 per month, a $125.08, or 202 percent, increase.” -Sam Cappellanti, American Action Forum

“A study by Avalere Health found that ‘consumers could face steep cost-sharing requirements—like co-payments, co-insurance and deductibles—layered on top of their monthly premiums … furthermore, there is a risk that patients could forgo needed care when faced with high upfront deductibles.’” -Kyle Cheney, Politico

“The ACA imposes an excise tax on insurance plans with an $8 billion cost the CBO expects to be passed to the consumer in the form of premium increases…Over the next decade, the HIT is estimated to cost the average individual $2,171 and family $5,140 in additional premiums.” -Sam Cappellanti, American Action Forum

Some of the lawmakers’ other Obamacare predictions are still developing, according to the report.