The Independent Institute

 
        

Peak Obamacare? We’re There »

The Obama administration has released a report estimating that enrollment in Obamacare will reach only 9.4 million to 11.4 million at the end of 2016. Back in 2010, when the Affordable Care Act was passed, the Congressional Budget Office estimated that exchange coverage would reach 21 million next year (Table 4). Why the come...
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Obamacare Exchange Plans Have 34 Percent Fewer Providers than Non-Exchange Plans »

Avalere Health has quantified how narrow networks are in Obamacare exchange plans, as shown in the figure below. According to Avalere CEO President Dan Mendelson: “Plans continue to test new benefit designs in the exchange market. Given the new requirements put in place by the ACA, network design is one way plans can drive...
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Government’s Burden on Young Americans »

The Independent Institute’s Love Gov videos offer an amusing look at the raw deal government policies give to America’s youth. In the videos, sometimes government tempts young people into bad deals, such as student loans, and other times it offers them little choice but to take bad deals, as with health insurance. But the...
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Maybe the Government Just Shouldn’t Ask People if They’re Uninsured »

Sir John Cowperthwaite was the Financial Secretary of the British Colony of Hong Kong when it began to boom in the 1960s: Asked what is the key thing poor countries should do, Cowperthwaite once remarked: “They should abolish the Office of National Statistics.” In Hong Kong, he refused to collect all but the most...
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Commonwealth Fund: “Underinsurance” Unchanged under Obamacare »

Yet another pro-Obamacare organization has had to publish a study indicating that Obamacare is failing to achieve its objectives. I recently discussed Families USA’s report that one-third of low-income families cannot afford care under Obamacare. This time it is the Commonwealth Fund, inventor of the notion of “underinsurance,” which is defined as out-of-pocket health...
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Planned Rate Hikes Presage a Health Insurance ‘Death Spiral’ »

The Wall Street Journal has reviewed health plans’ rate filings for 2016 in Obamacare exchanges: In New Mexico, market leader Health Care Service Corp. is asking for an average jump of 51.6% in premiums for 2016. The biggest insurer in Tennessee, BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, has requested an average 36.3% increase. In Maryland, market...
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Did a Health Insurer Pay over Ten Times the Self-Pay Price for Outpatient Surgery? »

A story from Arizona is a cloud with a silver lining: Teresa Anderson was pleasantly surprised how quick and hassle-free her eyelid-lift surgery was at Havasu Regional Medical Center’s outpatient-surgery facility in April 2014. Weeks later, the bills arrived at her Lake Havasu City home. Her surgeon, anesthesiologist and X-ray provider submitted bills and...
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Obamacare’s State-Based Exchanges Struggle with Surging Costs »

Obamacare’s health insurance exchanges are a real problem. States that established exchanges as “active purchasers” of health insurance, instead of just clearinghouses, have higher premiums. So, what is the point of them? Further, the federal government threw billions of dollars at states to set up exchanges, with zero accountability. Things are not improving. From...
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Why Don’t You Own Your Own Health Information? »

David Brailer, MD, was the first head of the Office of the National Coordinator of Health Information Technology (ONC), appointed by President George W. Bush. Today, he is a venture capitalist. Last week in the Wall Street Journal, Dr. Brailer noted that a law passed in 1996 governs our access to health information. Clearly,...
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There Is No Real Increase in Insured under Obamacare »

Gallup has released the full results of its first-quarter survey of health insurance. It concludes that the proportion of uninsured Americans has collapsed to the lowest level ever: 11.9 percent. Only the people who have employer-based benefits can be said to be paying for their own health insurance. They decreased 0.9 percentage points in...
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