STATE HEALTH CARE GETS DOSE OF REALITY
April 18, 2007
State lawmakers who back a single-payer, universal health care plan for Connecticut have received a needed, if overdue, dose of fiscal reality, says the New Haven Register.
The plan for the state government to provide health care coverage for everyone was voted out of the Insurance and Real Estate Committee with the lawmakers and the bill's boosters having no idea how much it would cost.
- The legislature's nonpartisan Office of Fiscal Analysis estimated the price tag for providing health care for the 2.95 million state residents under age 65 who would be eligible for coverage at between $11.8 billion and $17.7 billion.
- To put the estimated cost in context, Gov. M. Jodi Rell's proposed state budget for next year is $17.5 billion.
Advocates of universal health care have not only ignored the staggering cost to taxpayers, but the fact that the present health care system, imperfect as it may be, provides health coverage, either through employers or individual coverage, to 94 percent of state residents, says the Register.
Increases are needed in Medicaid reimbursement rates to doctors and dentists to make sure that those on Medicaid have adequate care. The reimbursement rate also needs to be raised for hospital care, says the Register. But doubling the state's budget and bankrupting state taxpayers is no way to solve the problem of providing health insurance to the 6 percent of state residents without coverage, says the Register.
Source: Editorial, State health care gets dose of reality," New Haven Register, April 18, 2007.
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