NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Health Care Law Unlikely to Fulfill Promises

January 27, 2011

Two of the central promises of President Barack Obama's health care overhaul law -- holding down costs and allowing everyone to keep their insurance if they like it -- are unlikely to be fulfilled, Medicare's Chief Actuary Richard Foster told the House Budget Committee on Wednesday.

  • Foster says analysis by his office shows that the health care law will raise the nation's health care tab modestly because newly insured people will be getting medical services they would have otherwise gone without.
  • Costs could also increase if Medicare cuts to hospitals, nursing homes and home health agencies turn out to be politically unsustainable over the years.

As for people getting to keep their health insurance plan, Foster's office is projecting that more than 7 million Medicare recipients in private Medicare Advantage plans will eventually have to find other coverage, cutting enrollment in the plans by about half.

Source: "Medicare Actuary Doubts Health Care Law Will Hold Down Costs," FOX News, January 26, 2011.

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