NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis


August 24, 2009

The health care overhaul bills championed by the Obama administration and congressional Democrats would result in less health care for consumers and higher taxes for all, says Peter Ferrara, director of entitlement and budget policy for the Institute for Policy Innovation in Texas.

The national health plans similar to what President Obama is proposing have been adopted in other countries.  They always start out promising universal access and free or reduced-price health care.  But they end up with massive institutional bureaucracies whose purpose and function are to deny health care and medical services.  Often they fail to control spending despite resorting to withholding care to politically weak groups, says Ferrara.

But Obama insists that his plan to fundamentally restructure health care is needed to reduce costs.  But according to the data, it would instead:

  • Impose rationing of health care procedures that will deny consumers care they seek.
  • Restrict consumers' freedom of choice over doctors and hospitals.
  • Expand the number of health care entitlements to new groups of consumers.
  • Trigger sharply higher taxes to pay for the overhaul.

Today, Americans enjoy the best health care and medical services in the world, an important part of our high standard of living.  President Obama has said "my view is that health care reform should be guided by a simple principle: fix what's broken and build on what works."  But that is not what his plan would do.

Instead, he would tear down what is good about the current system and replace it with old-fashioned and outdated socialized medicine policies adopted by other countries, reflecting their lower living standards.  It would be a terrible mistake, says Ferrara.

Source: Peter Ferrara, "Obama Health Plan: Rationing, Higher Taxes, and Lower Quality Care," Heartland Institute, August 2009.


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