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Healthcare: Over-promised, Over-burdened, Over-spent, but not “Overhauled”

Posted Apr 28 2010 4:01pm

The President signed HR 3590 into law calling it an “overhaul of the healthcare system” and “not a solution, but a step in the right direction.” I disagree on both counts.

(The following is a brief explanation. You can read in more detail, supported by evidence in “Uproot U.S. Healthcare,” which you can get at discount at the web site

H.R. 3590 is a step in precisely the wrong direction: more bureaucracy and complexity that both costs and kills ; increased coverage but decreased care; and explosion of jobs…in government: IRS agents, regulators, monitors and overseers but not one new nurse or doctor. That is what most Americans would call a step in the wrong direction.

The word “overhaul” really got to me. HR 3590 did not overhaul, meaning revise, repair or reform . H.R. 3590 is a WMD[c] (weapon of mass deception) that over-promises, over-burdens and over-spends, magnificently.

Both the President and Congressional enthusiasts promised that their “reform” Bill would simultaneously cover the uninsured AND save money. How credible is this promise?

Firstly, Congress has promised health insurance coverage and let the public believe that insurance equals health CARE. You and I know they are not the same. People get care every day without insurance and having insurance does not guarantee care. Just ask someone with Medicare coverage who cannot find a doctor because the doctors cannot afford to accept Medicare’s reimbursement schedule.

First the CBO (Congressional Budget Office) estimated H.R. 3590 would COST over $1 trillion. Then six weeks later, miraculously, they said it would SAVE $1 trillion. People who have analyzed the second estimate note double counting and rosy claims of savings that are frank fantasy. Answer the following question.

When has any government estimate of the cost of an entitlement been ever close to reality? Never! Just look at Medicare. Congress underestimated its cost by over 850% (GAO 1990 report) and now admits Medicare will go broke within seven years.

Seriously, does anyone outside the Beltway believe you can offer care to 30 million previously uninsured, build an entirely new bureaucracy, and save money at the same time? If there ever was an over-promise, this is it.

The most common question I have been asked recently on radio interviews is: Do we have enough doctors and nurses to care for 30 million newly insured Americans? Since H.R. 3590 has no money for new doctors or nurses, it seems that Congress thinks that current providers are sitting around doing nothing and can devote those millions of hours of unused time to the newly insured. People in Congress cannot be that crazy…or can they?

The average person understands the impossibility of putting 8 gallons into a 3-gallon jug, but not Congress. H.R. over-burdens a system that has no extra, unutilized capacity.

The healthcare crisis that POTUS highlighted in January 2009 was one of unsupportable cost. What does H.R. 3590 do? Simple answer: it adds massively to the already bloated bureaucracy with the attendant costs conservatively estimated at $1 trillion.

So, in the name of “reducing costs,” we SPEND one trillion dollars we do not have and therefore must print adding to the deficit. This behavior immediately brings to mind two prior blogs titled “ The Emperor Has No Clothes ” and “ The One-Eyed King .” What Congress and POTUS are doing is obviously wrong but this wrongness either escapes them or worse, they do not care…about us.

The louder a politician proclaims that what she or he is doing is our best interests, the more likely they are doing the opposite. H.R. 3590 is a perfect case in point. Ignore what they promise or predict. Consider only your own opinion of what they pass into law.

H.R. 3590 has over-promised and over-burdened and will massively over-spend.
H.R. 3590 will certainly not overhaul healthcare.

System MD

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