Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Federal Regulation of Health Care Soared Under Republican Rule

According to my analysis.

Cadillac Health Plans; And Taxation Thereof

Count me in as one who anticipates that a January "conference" (of whatever formality) mashing up the House and Senate health bills will be a lot tougher than the Beltway pros believe. A growing number of people, whom the President should take for granted, have been finding things in the bills that displease them greatly.

And I don't just mean the HuffingtonPost/DailyKos/MoveOn.org crowd. There's even a sense at the New York Times that the President's faction has failed to grab history by the tail. Witness this column by Bob Herbert, who protests the tax on so-called "Cadillac health plans," those which cost more than $23,000 for family coverage or $8,500 for single coverage. Because these dollar amounts will not adjust with inflation, Mr. Herbert notes that an increasing number of people will be subject to the tax as the years roll by.

Of course, Mr. Herbert is carrying water for organized labor, which is a staunch opponent of the "Cadillac tax." One of Big Labor's major successes has been to negotiate juicy health benefits, especially for retirees. (This is especially true in the public sector, as described in a new book by Steve Greenhut.)

Conservatives haven't really weighed in on the "Cadillac" tax. Good: Let the unions fight their own battle. It is a tax hike, which any conservative should oppose. However, if it were re-cast in a different bill, it could be used to fund a universal tax credit or voucher, which would reduce Medicaid and SCHIP dependency. Indeed, lest we forget, this is the path Senator McCain took in his presidential campaign, and which I discussed favorably at the time.

A California Cash Cow or New York Pork With Your Cornhusker Kickback?

The latest Capital Ideas, in which I address the plaintiff wails of Governor Schwarzenegger and Governor Paterson, who demand even more federal bailouts of their Medicaid programs.

Senator Bill Nelson's "Florida Flim Flam'

Which he asserts protects Florida seniors, will likely lead to increase in Medicare fraud.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Monday, December 21, 2009

Electronic Health Records: Ontario's Experience

You'd think that a government-monopoly, single-payer, health system wouldn't have too much difficulty developing and installing electronic health records (EHRs). Well, you'd be wrong. Witness the experience in Ontario.

Reduced Medicare Benefits Will Increase Cost of Private Insurance - John R. Graham - Critical Condition on National Review Online

Reduced Medicare Benefits Will Increase Cost of Private Insurance - John R. Graham - Critical Condition on National Review Online: another blog entry about my latest study.

Advantage of Medicare Advantage

The Advantage of Medicare Advantage, a blog entry at the John Goodman Health Blog, which discusses my new analysis.

Medicare Advantage or Medicare Monopoly?

The "reform"'s attack on seniors' benefits, by rolling back the Medicare Advantage program, will increase, not decrease, medical costs. Millions of seniors will lose access to timely medical care, and the "hidden tax" on the privately insured will go up, according to my latest study.