Daily Policy Digest
|Repealing Obamacare Requires Deliberate, Thoughtful Process
The next Congress is likely to repeal Obamacare by "reconciliation," a parliamentary maneuver that allows a simple majority in the U.S. Senate to pass a bill. Otherwise, we could expect Democratic Senators to filibuster a repeal bill. However, not every jot and tittle of Obamacare can be repealed through reconciliation, which sets up a challenging couple of years (at least) for those who wish to repeal Obamacare and replace it with patient-centered health care, writes NCPA Senior Fellow John R. Graham...
|The Economics of NATO Expansion
In his January 1997 State of the Union speech, President Bill Clinton lauded the expansion of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) into Central and East Europe, saying America's "first task is to help to build...an undivided, democratic Europe." However, the president also expressed a desire to expand NATO in the hope of fostering seamless military cooperation across Europe. Twenty-five years later, there has been little discernable improvement in NATO’s military capabilities despite the addition of 12 new member nations, leaving the United States to provide most of the forces defending Europe, and to pay the tab, writes NCPA Senior Fellow David Grantham and Research Associate Christian Yiu...
|Drug Affordability and the 21st Century Cures Act
The high price of new drugs has become a political hot potato. Hillary Clinton made drug affordability a part of her platform -- as did President-elect Donald Trump. To a significant degree, over-priced drugs are a problem partly caused by politicians. Congress allowed the regulatory regime at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to run rampant. But maybe the laws regulating drug discovery are beginning to change, writes NCPA Senior Fellow Devon Herrick in Townhall...
|Obamacare IS Socialized Medicine!
The "Affordable Care Act" was poorly named; it did not make care affordable. It made health coverage semi-affordable only for those newly-eligible for Medicaid and those earning up to 250 percent of the federal poverty level. The ACA took away the right of consumers to purchase the benefit package and type of coverage they prefer. It also took away the flexibility for insurers to experiment with differing plan designs, writes NCPA Senior Fellow Devon Herrick...
|Castro's Death and Cuban Health Care
The recent death of Cuban dictator Fidel Castro brought forth a grotesque encomium from the Canadian Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, who asserted "Mr. Castro made significant improvements to the education and healthcare of his island nation." The reality is very different: Hep C is communicated by blood transfusions, patients' families have to bring their own sheets and soap to hospitals, which sometimes lack electricity, writes NCPA Senior Fellow John R. Graham...
|Health Jobs Grow 1.5 Times Faster Than Non-Health Jobs
This morning's jobs report maintained the trend of high growth in health services, which grew 1.5 times faster than non-health jobs. With 28,000 jobs added, health services accounted for almost one in six of 178,000 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...
|Surprise Medical Bills A Growing Problem Requiring Price Transparency
Donald Trump’s health reform proposal during the presidential campaign promised to deliver price transparency to health care. Doctors and hospitals are infamously terrible at sharing price information with patients. It is a problem for both scheduled procedures and visits to emergency rooms. The root problem is that prices are not formed through a normal market process, but administratively determined between government, insurers, and providers, writes NCPA Senior Fellow John R. Graham...
|The Price is Right! Trump's Choice Indicates Push to Repeal and Replace Obamacare
Donald Trump's choice of Dr. Tom Price as his nominee for U.S. Secretary of Health & Human Services indicates the Trump Administration will make a serious effort to repeal and replace Obamacare with patient-centered health reform. Obamacare's opponents can now be confident that skilled leadership will wage a sophisticated and likely successful effort to restart health reform. Senior Fellow John R. Graham shows four reasons why...
|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...
|Not So Fast on the Overtime Rule, Says Judge
Last week, a U.S. District judge issued a preliminary injunction against the Department of Labor's new overtime pay rule, scheduled to take effect on Thursday, writes NCPA Senior Fellow Pam Villarreal.