Friday, March 19, 2010

More reading on Obamacare

These articles are from various places around the web. Some draw parallels between the healthcare bill being debated right now and Massachusettes' healthcare system, which already undertook many of the same reforms in the Senate bill, and which is failing miserably.

How Obamacare is like the failed Romneycare in Massachusettes.

"In the past three years, insurance premiums in Massachusetts have increased by 8-10% each year, nearly twice the national average."

Yes Mr. President, A Free Market Can Fix Healthcare

"As [free] markets make health insurance more secure and medical care more affordable, fewer people will fall into this vulnerable situation [of not being able to afford care], and it will be easier to care for those who do."

Medicare denies the most claims

"Critics of non-government insurance complain that such companies deny claims, and imply that this would never happen with government-run insurance such as Medicare. According to the American Medical Association’s 2008 Health Insurance Report Card , the health insurer that denies the most claims is Medicare. This is compared to Aetna, Anthem, Cigna, Coventry, Health Net, Humana, and United Health care. 21% of Medicare’s claim denials had the following “reason code description”: “These are non-covered services because this is not deemed a ‘medical necessity’ by the payer.” It was the 2nd most common reason."

Poor face greatest difficulties getting care in Massachusettes

"One in five adults said they had been told in the last 12 months that a doctor or clinic was not accepting new patients or would not see patients with their type of insurance. The rejection rates for low-income adults and those with public insurance were double the rates for higher-income residents and those with private coverage."

Obamacare is Economically Unsustainable

"This bill adds a new health care entitlement at a time when we have no idea how to pay for the entitlements we already have. The full 10- year cost of the bill has a $460 billion deficit. The second 10-year cost of this bill has a $1.4 trillion deficit."

Obamacare is constitutionally suspect

Patients waiting up to a year to see a family practice doc for a routine visit in Massachusettes

“It’s a recipe for disaster,” Dr. Sereno said. “It’s great that people have access to health care, but now we’ve got to find a way to give them access to preventive services. The point of this legislation was not to get people episodic care.”

Although supporters of the Massachusetts plan had hoped it would save money, the opposite has occurred. The state expects to spend $595 million more in 2009 on its health insurance program than it did in 2006 — a 42% increase.

2 comments:

THE AUTHORS said...

Yes, it would appear that you're right. Though I think that the fooled half of the population is quickly dwindling. I read somewhere, and totally agree, that if there's one thing an American really doesn't like, it's being told what's best for them. You'd think they'd get that through their head. I got a kick out of Pelosi responding to the preliminary CBO numbers the other day. "I love numbers, they're so precise." Unless they're poll numbers, apparently!

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Bisous said...

As a doctor in Massachusetts.... I never had trouble scheduling appointments with my own doctors. I can get in when I need to. I have middle of the road commerical insurance, though. Most medicaid folks have to go to the clinics of the big hospitals, which are full.

As a psychiatrist, I do except the commercial insurances, but I don't accept medicaid (except when combined with medicare). We are extremely busy, and even in Massachusetts, psychiatrists are harder to find than most docs and don't need to accept that many insurances - in fact we plan to cut out a few plans next year. It wasn't so much the money that made us drop medicaid, it was the hassle. For most insurances, we see a patient, we wrote our clinical note, we coordinated care with the therapist or primary and documented that in our note, c'est tout. For medicaid, we had to have them take a stupid test every three months and fill out a stupid treatment plan every three months, all extra paperwork, all especially tedious when we have an electronic record and here is all this paper, and why should we get paid less to do extra ridiculous work so that some dope at medicare could check something on a quality assurance box? Just my experience.

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