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White House Delays Health Law's Medicare Cuts
Industry Survey Shows Premiums Skyrocketing
(Washington, D.C.) – The Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare, is funded by a range of new taxes and mandates, as well as hundreds of billions in cuts to Medicare. These cuts were intended to help guarantee the law would not add to the $17 trillion national debt. The administration has also argued that they're part of the "savings" included in the law, and that they would help extend the life of the program. Yesterday however, the White House announced that they will not implement the Medicare cuts scheduled to take place this year. These specific cuts had been announced only a few weeks ago, and were to be finalized this week. It is not clear whether the White House flip-flop simply pushes these cuts into the future, or whether they will simply be added to the U.S. debt.
Separately, a survey of insurance brokers conducted by Morgan-Stanley reports that insurance premiums are skyrocketing for those who purchase care in the individual or small group market. Rates are up by more than 10 percent overall, and states such as California, Florida, and Delaware seeing increases of between 37 and 100 percent. The independent analysis concludes the increases "are largely due to changes under the [Affordable Care Act]." These findings are consistent with a February report from eHealthinsurance.com that indicates consumers are paying about 40 percent more than they did before the law went into effect.
Daniel Garza, Executive Director of The LIBRE Initiative, released the following statement:
"While enrollment under the health care law has concluded for the year, taxpayers and insurance buyers continue to receive bad news. And what's worse, it is clear that those that voted for the law did not know what was in the legislation and it appears that the White House is still making this law up as they go along.
The health care law's Medicare cuts will impact the care seniors depend on, but kicking the can down the road won't solve anything. If they are merely delayed, more dramatic cuts can be expected later. If the White House never plans to implement them, they must present a new proposal to pay for this costly law. Either way, it is time to admit the serious flaws with this regime, and to work with Congress on reforms that put patients first, and which uses market-based competition to help control costs."