Daily Policy Digest
|Medicare Accountable Care Organizations Continue to Underwhelm
Medicare's Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs), which launched in 2012, were supposed to introduce a significant shift away from paying for "volume" to paying for "value." If ACOs pass certain thresholds of cost and quality, they can pocket some of the savings. The 2015 results for Medicare's ACOs have been reported, and the results are underwhelming.
|Medical Prices Rose 10 Times More Than Non-Medical Prices in August
The Consumer Price Index rose 0.2 percent in August. Medical prices, however, continued their upward march, increasing by one full percent -- 10 times more than non-medical consumer goods and services. If prices for medical care had been flat, the CPI would have risen by just 0.1 percent, writes NCPA Senior Fellow John R. Graham...
|What Is A Health Insurance Market Where No Health Insurance Is Offered?
Obamacare is becoming a Zen philosophical riddle: What is a health insurance market where no health insurance is offered? Obamacare appears to be in a death spiral, with a shrinking pool of insurers offering coverage, far fewer individuals purchasing insurance than advocates had anticipated, and double-digit price increases making policies unaffordable, writes NCPA Senior Fellow John. R.Graham...
|Taxi versus Uber: The Regulations, the People, the Money and the Future
The ride-hailing service Uber is only six years old, yet it has already inspired a host of imitators, such as Lyft, Wingz and Taxify. It has also sparked fierce opposition from the taxi industry, which is being undercut by Uber's business model, writes NCPA Research Associate David Sobczak...
|EpiPen: A Case Study in Health Insurance Failure
EpiPen is a case study in how health insurance distorts our choices and increases their cost. I learned this by following an Internet advertisement for EpiPen down its rabbit hole. The ad induced me to download my "EpiPen Savings Card" which would ensure I paid nothing for my EpiPens, writes NCPA Senior Fellow John. R Graham...
|How Defense Dollars Are Wasted on Security Assistance
The House and Senate versions of the fiscal year 2017 National Defense Authorization Act would give the Pentagon greater control over security assistance to other countries -- oversight now generally reserved to the State Department. A larger issue than the administration of funds, however, is that current security assistance programs are ineffective and often undermine American security, writes NCPA Research Associate Braxton Clark and Senior Fellow David Grantham...
|Do Transparency Tools Work in Health Care?
Encouraging workers to reduce unnecessary spending is all about creating the appropriate incentives, writes NCPA Senior Fellow Devon Herrick...
|Recent Rise In Health Coverage Due To Return of Jobs With Benefits
Over seventy percent of residents, age 18 to through 64, had private health insurance in the first quarter of this year, which is which is the same rate as persisted until 2006. Obamacare has not achieved a breakthrough in coverage. It has just restored us to where we were a decade ago. Further, the contribution of Obamacare’s exchanges to this is almost trivial, covering only four million people, writes NCPA Senior Fellow John R. Graham...
|Anti-School Choice Nonsense
Attempts at school choice expansion, such as the forthcoming Texas ESA proposal, aim to provide affordable alternatives to the assigned public school so that 100% of school children can derive maximum education opportunity from the school taxes extracted from 100 of the citizens, writes NCPA Senior Fellow John Merrifield...
|California's Bag Ban: A Wealth Transfer from Customers to Big Grocers
In 2014, the California State Legislature passed, and Gov. Jerry Brown signed, Senate Bill 270, a statewide ban on plastic bags scheduled to take effect in July 2015. Before this bill passed, many California counties and municipalities enacted their own plastic bag bans with little fanfare. However, upon reading SB 270, the public discovered that it would line the pockets of grocers at the expense of consumers, writes NCPA Senior Fellow Pam Villarreal...