Obamacare Saving Us Money?

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The title of article is US could spend $2.6 trillion less on health than original Obamacare estimates and it sounds like an incredible success story….until you read the details.  So, why is there less money being spent?

  1. Spending on Medicaid — the joint federal-state health program for the poor — will be $1.05 trillion lower than originally projected during the time span, a 23 percent difference. “This was partly due to the Supreme Court decision in 2012 that made ACA Medicaid expansion optional for states and significantly reduced enrollment projections,” the report said.
  2. Spending on Medicare, the federal health coverage program for the elderly, is expected to be $455 billion less than the 2010 projections. “One reason is the Budget Control Act of 2011 (i.e., sequestration), which required Medicare payments for all types of services to be reduced 2 percent beginning in April 2013; another reason is the slower than expected spending growth between 2010 and 2014,” the report said.
  3. And spending on private health insurance is now projected to be $664 billion less during the time span than original estimates, according to the report. “Much of this decline was driven by slower spending growth between 2010 and 2014 than had been expected in 2010,” the study said. “Contributors to slower growth likely included the sluggish economic recovery as well as lower-than-expected prescription drug spending because of patent expirations and increases in generic drug prescribing,” the report said. “Another likely contributor was a substantial shift toward higher deductibles and cost sharing in private plans, some of which may have been adopted in anticipation of the ACA excise tax on high-cost plans.”

To summarize, not allowing Medicaid to expand, cutting payments to doctors, and increasing deductibles so patients won’t go to their doctors has allowed us to spend less money.  Watch how the press spins this.  Actually, the headline noted above already proved my point.

Douglas Farrago MD

Douglas Farrago MD is a full-time practicing family doc in Forest, Va. He started Forest Direct Primary Care where he takes no insurance and bills patients a monthly fee. He is board certified in the specialty of Family Practice. He is the inventor of a product called the Knee Saver which is currently in the Baseball Hall of Fame. The Knee Saver and its knock-offs are worn by many major league baseball catchers. He is also the inventor of the CryoHelmet used by athletes for head injuries as well as migraine sufferers. Dr. Farrago is the author of four books, two of which are the top two most popular DPC books. From 2001 – 2011, Dr. Farrago was the editor and creator of the Placebo Journal which ran for 10 full years. Described as the Mad Magazine for doctors, he and the Placebo Journal were featured in the Washington Post, US News and World Report, the AP, and the NY Times. Dr. Farrago is also the editor of the blog Authentic Medicine which was born out of concern about where the direction of healthcare is heading and the belief that the wrong people are in charge. This blog has been going daily for more than 15 years Article about Dr. Farrago in Doximity Email Dr. Farrago – [email protected] 

  2 comments for “Obamacare Saving Us Money?

  1. Perry
    June 27, 2016 at 9:01 am

    Hmm, not saving me any money.

  2. Dr Bonz
    June 27, 2016 at 7:32 am

    Of course it looks like it has saved money. NO ONE USES IT! I can’t tell you how many of my patients do not seek medical care any longer because of their insane deductibles. If you have a $500 family deductible and you need to have something done, you do it. When you have a $5000 deductible, you don’t. It’s just that simple.

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