Daily Policy Digest
|The White Man's Burden: More Drinking, Drugs, and Suicides Since 2000
The Economist has estimated health status explains the Trump vote better than being a non-college educated white citizen does. The sicker you are, the more likely you are to have voted for Mr. Trump. The people who should have been most grateful for Obamacare rejected it in the 2016 election, more than they had in 2012, writes NCPA Senior Fellow John R. Graham...
|Will Trump Really Kick 22 Million Off Health Insurance?
Now that repeal of Obamacare is within striking distance, Obamacare's supporters and the media are aghast at over 20 million people potentially losing their overly expensive health insurance. If Republican politicians cannot overcome this objection, they will never move forward with repealing and replacing Obamacare, writes NCPA Senior Fellow John R. Graham...
|What Will TrumpCare Look Like?
President-elect Donald Trump made repealing Obamacare the cornerstone of his campaign. Now that he has won, his future administration is faced with the daunting task of unraveling nearly seven years of Obamacare, writes NCPA Senior Fellow Devon Herrick for Townhall...
|Big Pharma and Access to Medicines
A new report ranks research-based pharmaceutical companies on a number of measurements of how they make medicines available to patients in low-income countries. Philanthropic enterprises (such as the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation) are entering these partnerships with for-profit drug makers. It is a far healthier development than the old-fashioned approach of just beating up drug makers for their greed, writes NCPA Senior Fellow John R. Graham...
|Health Coverage The Same As Ten Years Ago
Critics of Obamacare who focus on its increasing the proportion of people dependent on Medicaid (a welfare program) ignore the great expansion of Medicaid dependency years before anyone had heard of Barack Obama, writes NCPA Senior Fellow John R. Graham...
|Bill Clinton is Right: Obamacare is Crazy for Workers
Bill Clinton recently referred to high marginal income tax rates that Obamacare imposes on workers through the design of its tax credits, which get clawed back in a very unfair way. The Administration recently confessed premiums for the benchmark Obamacare plans are going up 25 percent, on average. Trying to appease angry enrollees, the Administration feebly claims tax credits reduce net premiums people pay, writes NCPA Senior Fellow John R. Graham...
|Should Government Pay Family Members to Care For Disabled Patients?
The Department of Justice has had significant success tracking down and charging those who bill Medicaid and Medicare falsely, which often goes hand-in-hand with financial fraud in the area of personal-care services. Personal caregivers funded by Medicaid have been charged with severe neglect, leading even to deaths of disabled patients. Three quarters of caregivers funded by Medicaid are family members, and they are among the culprits, writes NCPA Senior Fellow John R. Graham...
|Health Policy Election 2016 Post-Mortem
America dodged a bullet on health care -- but still has a lot of work ahead. The high cost of Obamacare is arguably one of the many issues that drove Americans to the polls to vote for Trump or against Clinton. If it did nothing else, Trump’s victory is important because it blocked the plethora of bad health policy ideas championed by Clinton. The leading presidential candidates' positions on health reform could not be farther apart. Whereas Hillary Clinton wanted to double down on Obamacare and expand it, Donald Trump plans to repeal Obamacare in its entirety. Clinton wanted to expand Obamacare subsidies, she wanted to expand Medicaid eligibility in the remaining states that have not done so and she even wanted to expand eligibility for Medicare. She also wanted to enact a Soviet-style system of price controls on drugs and make drug makers justify their prices -- whatever that means, writes NCPA Senior Fellow John R. Graham.
|Health Jobs Grew Twice As Fast As Non-Heath Jobs in October
Friday's jobs report maintained the trend of high growth in health services, with those jobs growing twice as fast as non-health jobs (0.21 percent versus 0.10 percent). With 31,000 jobs added, health services accounted for almost one fifth of 161,000 new jobs. The disproportionately high share of job growth in health services is a deliberate outcome of Obamacare, writes NCPA Senior Fellow John R. Graham...
|Divergence in Private Versus Public Health Facilities Construction Continues in September
Health facilities construction accounted for 6 percent of non-residential construction starts. However, construction of private health facilities dropped 1.0 percent, while construction of public health facilities increased 2.4 percent, versus a drop of 1.0 percent for other public construction. Is this what they mean by "infrastructure" spending -- broken bridges and roads, while more VA and county hospitals spring up?