Obamacare

ObamaCare's "consumer protections are hurting millions of Americans"

|

In an op-ed for Kaiser Health News, Michael Cannon of the Cato Institute goes after the supposed "consumer protections" in the new health care law:

These supposed consumer protections are hurting millions of Americans by increasing the cost of insurance, increasing the cost of hiring and driving insurers out of business.
At the same time Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius was threatening to bankrupt insurers who claim ObamaCare is increasing premiums by more than 1 percent, her own employees estimated that one of the law's regulations – the  requirement to purchase unlimited annual coverage – will increase some people's premiums by 7 percent or more when fully implemented. A Connecticut insurer estimated that just the provisions taking effect last year would increase some premiums by 20-30 percent.

Such mandates force consumers to divert income from food, housing, and education to pay for the additional coverage. That can leave consumers worse off, even threaten their health. They can also force employers to reduce hiring, leaving some Americans with neither a job nor health insurance. This reality led McDonald's to seek a waiver from the unlimited annual coverage mandate, among other rules.

The ban on discriminating against children with pre-existing conditions has caused insurers to stop selling child-only policies in dozens of states. The dependent-coverage mandate was cited as one of the reasons spurring a Service Employees International Union local in New York City to eliminate coverage for 6,000 dependent children.

In 2008, Congress passed a similar mandate that supporters said would expand coverage for mental-health and substance-abuse services. Instead, that mandate spurred the Screen Actors Guild to eliminate mental-health coverage for 12,000 of its lower-paid members. It had the same effect on 3,500 members of the Chicago's Plumbers Welfare Fund, and 2,200 employees of Woodman's Food Market in Wisconsin. Other employers are curtailing access to mental-health services thanks to this mandate, and some insurers have stopped selling such coverage altogether.

Read the whole thing here.

NEXT: Loughner Explanation Watch: Bad Metal Music

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. so health care costs didnt rise before the insurance regulation bill?

    1. Have they stopped?

      1. point here

        vermont gun owner here

        n’er the twain shall meet…

        1. wtf? 2 rs in orrin?

  2. Teh evul insurance corporayshuns r using it as an excuse to raise r rates!!!!111eleventy!!

  3. Noun, Verb, ObamaCare’s bad. Noun, Verb, ObamaCare’s bad. Lather, Rinse, Repeat

    1. When the SEIU cites Obamacare as a reason for dropping kiddies insurance, it really is that easy.

  4. The insurers seem to be getting smarter – mental health would be an easy way to retaliate against them for the mandate, since the mandate is clicnically depressing.

    However, I should point out everyone would be statistically better off without insurance and don’t currently have to pay any of these premiums. The biggest problem is theat corproate HR officers insist on subsidizing these benifits, huring people who work for corporations.

    1. “The biggest problem is theat corproate HR officers insist on subsidizing these benifits, huring people who work for corporations.”
      Well, no. They’re subsidized by out tax laws; that’s the government.

      1. It’s hilarious watching faux-libertarians jump through hoops to blame the gov’t.

  5. I truly don’t know what the best system is, but that article sounds to me like a great argument in favor of single-payer not-tied-to-employment health insurance.

    1. As long as the government does not hold the money for the single payer plan. Political leaders look at any source of revenue as something they themselves need to spend.

    2. Yes, Obamacare must be stopped. Provisions like enabling full treatment and stopping these 80% payout rackets from dropping children born sick HURTS people.

      1. Shut the fuck up you schmuck.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.