The double-digit premium increases that insurance companies announced for next year have put to rest any delusion that ObamaCare will lower health coverage costs in America. Despite that, the delusion that it'll move the country toward universal coverage lingers, notes Reason Foundation Senior Analyst Shikha Dalmia in her morning column at the Washington Examiner. She notes:
Before Obamacare, every percentage-point increase in premiums would price a few hundred thousand people out of the market. Obamacare's supporters, however, claim that the law's complicated scheme of mandates and subsidies will prevent this from happening. But that's unlikely…
The law's play-or-pay mandate requires employers with more than 50 full-time employees to offer a lavish panoply of benefits or else pay a penalty. Many small businesses will simply choose to stay small to avoid the mandate, which means less hiring and more uninsured.
As for large companies, McKinsey & Company, a private consulting group, estimated that nearly 30 percent will pay rather than play—that is, pay modest fines instead of paying several times as much to give robust coverage to employees.
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