Monday, May 27, 2013

You Can't Say We Didn't Warn You

This comes from the New York Times so you lefties have to take it as gospel:

Say goodbye to that $500 deductible insurance plan and the $20 co-payment for a doctor’s office visit. They are likely to become luxuries of the past.

Get ready to enroll in a program to manage your diabetes. Or prepare for a health screening to determine your odds of developing a costly health condition.

Expect to have your blood pressure checked or a prescription filled at a clinic at your office, rather than by your private doctor.

Then blame — or credit — the so-called Cadillac tax, which penalizes companies that offer high-end health care plans to their employees.

While most of the attention on the Obama administration’s health care law has been on providing coverage to tens of millions of uninsured Americans by 2014, workers with employer-paid health insurance are also beginning to feel the effects. Companies hoping to avoid the tax are beginning to scale back the more generous health benefits they have traditionally offered and to look harder for ways to bring down the overall cost of care...

Proponents of the law say the Cadillac tax is helping bring down costs by making employers pay attention to what their health care costs are likely to be in the long run. “It’s really one of the most significant provisions” in the Affordable Care Act, said Jonathan Gruber, the M.I.T. economist who played an influential role in shaping the law. “It’s focusing employers on cost control, not slashing,” he said.

Cynthia Weidner, an executive at the benefits consultant HighRoads, agreed that the tax appeared to be having the intended effect. “The premise it’s built upon is happening,” she said, adding, “the consumer should continue to expect that their plan is going to be more expensive, and they will have less benefits. ” (emphasis mine--Darren)
Is this what you signed on for with Obamacare?  You thought you were going to get free health care, didn't you?  Remember what Margaret Thatcher said, the problem with socialism is you eventually run out of other people's money.

Update, 5/29/13:  Your quality of care will probably go down under Obamacare:
If you live in California and purchase health insurance on the newly created exchange called Covered California, don't expect care at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, the prestigious academic hospital in Los Angeles. That top-drawer care won't be covered by exchange plans. Many Californians will have to give up doctors and hospitals they currently use if they want subsidized coverage.

That's one of the truths omitted from last Thursday's fanfare when Covered California unveiled the plans it will offer starting Oct. 1.

Covered California will be the largest exchange in the nation. So the unveiling attracted nationwide interest. ObamaCare boosters declared victory. But the truth gap between what they claimed and what exchange consumers will actually get is wider than San Francisco Bay. Setting the record straight is important, because the problems in California will be repeated elsewhere.

Maine, for example, hasn't officially announced its exchange plans yet, but already consumers are outraged to learn that they too will have to give up their current doctors and hospitals if they enroll on the exchange.
 Update #2, 5/31/13California leads the way!
“The rates submitted to Covered California for the 2014 individual market,” the state said in a press release, “ranged from two percent above to 29 percent below the 2013 average premium for small employer plans in California’s most populous regions.”

That’s the sentence that led to all of the triumphant commentary from the left. “This is a home run for consumers in every region of California,” exulted Peter Lee.

Except that Lee was making a misleading comparison. He was comparing apples—the plans that Californians buy today for themselves in a robust individual market—and oranges—the highly regulated plans that small employers purchase for their workers as a group. The difference is critical...

 It’s great that Covered California released this early the rates that insurers plan to charge on the exchange, as it gives us an early window into how the exchanges will work in a state that has an unusually competitive and inexpensive individual market for health insurance. But that’s the irony. The full rate report is subtitled “Making the Individual Market in California Affordable.” But Obamacare has actually doubled individual-market premiums in the Golden State.
Update #3, 5/31/13:  Who could have predicted thisI did, a long time ago!
Obamacare may make people with certain lifestyles pay a very real price.

According to new regulations just issued by the Obama Administration, if you smoke, you're overweight, or have high cholesterol or high blood pressure, you could be forced to pay a lot more for health insurance. 
You thought we were joking about being required to eat broccoli.  Not so much.

5 comments:

allen (in Michigan) said...

The key word being "eventually".

If it's someone else's problem then proponents of the policy can simply dismiss the calculable eventuality with an airy wave of the hand.

When "eventually" starts to get uncomfortably close in time there's always the resort to increasingly ineffectual and dangerous policies - tax increases, expansion of scope, screaming at anyone who points out the increasingly obvious - to put off, if even for a day, the day of reckoning.

Marlex said...

I'm 32 and work in a small business that pays for 60 percent of my health insurance. Obamacare hasn't even fully kicked in yet and my insurance premium just jumped 18 percent. That's going to cost me an extra $6 per paycheck and cost my employers slightly more. So not only am I paying more, the chances of getting a raise has diminished because my insurance company just got it for me. And most estimates say I can expect a 50 to 100 percent jump by the time Obamacare is fully implemented.

Shannon Severance said...

Obamacare, taken as a whole, is too complex and should not have passed in the form it did.

However, even without Obamacare health costs would have still risen faster than inflation leading to a world where, "the consumer should continue to expect that their plan is going to be more expensive, and they will have less benefits."



I would have welcomed a change to tax law that removed the exemption where employer paid healthcare is not counted as compensation. The best would be to have offsetting tax codes changes that would keep it revenue neutral. Change 1, increase the amount each personal exemption lowers taxable income. Change 2, increase the thresholds for each tax bracket.)

pseudotsuga said...

I didn't vote for it...may I be excused?

MikeAT said...

Shannon

I think you're proceeding from an incorrect premise. The purpose of Obamacare, with the Orwellian title of the Affordable Care Act has a purpose which has nothing to do with expanding heath care, reducing cost, etc.

Obamacare is the bridge to single payer. Obama has said his goal is this. Put this in and within the foreseeable future the private insurance company will collapse and all that will be left is a form of Medicaid for all us peasants. God help you if you have a chronic illness or are hoping for improved treatments for your condition.