U.S. Health Spending Slows?
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And all it took was a massive recession! My latest on the National Journal regarding health care reform legislation:
I am stunned by the implication that the cost estimates for the current legislation are somehow overestimated, based on the recent CMS report that health spending slowed slightly during the worst economic period since the Great Depression. Stuart Butler was right to mention a recent piece by James Capretta in which he runs through many of the reasons that the estimate is way too low, but they are worth reviewing again.
Pretending the $200+ billion “doc fix” will not happen. Pretending Medicare can make cuts through “efficiencies” ad infinite without disrupting the program or cost-shifting to the private sector. Using 10 years of taxes to pay for 6 years of program. Even the Congressional Budget Office and the CMS Chief Actuary have said, they doubt the bills’ savings will materialize. All the evidence points not to the cost estimate being too high, but being laughably low.
Read more for a look at the government’s dismal track record of projecting costs for health care programs.