John R. Graham Archive

John R. Graham is a Senior Fellow at The Independent Institute.
Full biography and recent publications

Obamacare Might Have Enrolled Only 2.3 Million; Spent $73 Billion to Save Less Than $6 Billion in Uncompensated Care



According to the latest report from the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS), it looks like the number of people who bought subsidized private insurance on Obamacare’s exchanges is only 2.3 million: “Based on an estimated 10.3 million decrease in the total number of uninsured and an estimated 8 million increase in the number...
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More Evidence That Medicaid Expansion Increases Emergency Department Use



The evidence that Medicaid expansion increases use of hospitals’ emergency departments is coming fast and thick. Hospital executives are longer afraid to admit it, and have given up the pretense that Medicaid increases timely, quality, primary care. Here’s one data point from Fort Smith, Arkansas: Almost a year after the first health insurance enrollment...
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Hospitals Are Cutting Charity Care and Using Emergency Rooms More



Hospitals, inveterate lobbyists for Obamacare, have responded rationally to its incentives: They have increased use of their emergency departments, and cut charity care. On Tuesday, NPR had a feature on hospitals’ using online services to allow frequent flyers to book appointments with emergency departments: Three times in one week, 34-year-old Michael Granillo returned to the emergency...
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Obamacare Will Devour Your Pay Raise



Mercer’s latest National Survey of Employer Sponsored Health Plans finds that the cost of employer-based benefits will jump significantly in 2015. Employee-benefits writer Stephen Miller, CEBS, reports: Employers in the U.S. are predicting that health benefit cost per employee will rise by 3.9 percent on average in 2015, preliminary results from a new survey by Mercer...
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A Very Weak Case for Hospital Mergers



One consequence of Obamacare is hich can reduce competition and increase prices. Writing in the Wall Street Journal, Dr. Kenneth L. Davis, MD, CEO and President of Mount Sinai Health System in New York City, puts forward a number of claims in favor of hospital consolidation. Each assertion is weak, making an unconvincing argument overall. First, Dr....
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After $26 Billion Paid Out, Meaningful Use of Electronic Health Records Only 4 Percent of Target



At a September 3 meeting of the Obama administration’s Health IT Policy Committee, officials disclosed that only 3,154 eligible professionals (doctors, dentists, et cetera) had “attested” to so-called “meaningful use stage 2″ to get their bounties from the federal government for installing electronic health records. Only 143 hospitals had attested. One healthcare leader, who was at the meeting,...
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Costs of Government Administration of Health Care to Almost Double in Ten Years



This week’s report by staff of the Office of the Actuary of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services concluded that the last few years of muted increases in health spending will soon be ending. Health spending will resume its upward march: The combined effects of the Affordable Care Act’s coverage expansions, faster economic...
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Obamacare Tax Merry-Go-Round



Get a load of how Obamacare health-insurance premium taxes work. According to Medicaid Health Plans of America: “This situation results in the federal government taxing itself and taxing state governments to fund the higher Medicaid managed care payments required to fund the ACA health insurer fee.” It look me a few times to get...
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Can Taxpayers Recover Hundreds of Millions of Dollars from Obamacare Exchanges?



The Office of the Inspector General (OIG) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has just released a report on the contracts issued to private vendors to set up the federal pieces of Obamacare’s disastrous health-insurance exchanges. This is only the first of a series of reports, and it limits itself to describing the...
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Medicare Fees: The RUC Is Bad, but There’s No Point in Regulating It



Politico recently ran an interesting story on the Relative Value Scale Update Committee—the “RUC”—a body convened by the American Medical Association that fixes the fees that Medicare pays physicians. It describes the absurdity of a committee of physicians fixing fees that the government pays physicians, and demonstrates how the RUC pays primary-care practitioners much...
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