Obama: Yeah, a lot of you won’t be able to keep your doctor after all

posted at 10:41 am on March 14, 2014 by Ed Morrissey

Voters in November might be ready to show Democrats what they think about removing choice and hiking costs, as well as their arrogance in determining that a few politicians in Washington know better about their choices than they do. Unfortunately, Barack Obama doesn’t appear to have figured out this problem. In an interview with WebMD, Obama finally acknowledged that, contra his promise, people might not be able to keep the doctors they liked, but that they probably shouldn’t have liked those doctors in the first place:

“For the average person, many folks who don’t have health insurance initially, they’re going to have to make some choices. And they might end up having to switch doctors, in part because they’re saving money,” said Obama in an interview with the medical website WebMD.

“But that’s true if your employer suddenly decides we think this network’s going to give a better deal, we think this is going to help keep premiums lower, you’ve got to use this doctor as opposed to that one, this hospital as opposed to that one. The good news is in most states people have more than one option and what they’ll find, I think, is that their doctor or network or hospital that’s conveniently located is probably in one of those networks. Now, you may find out that that network’s more expensive than another network. And then you’ve got to make a choice in terms of what’s right for your family.”

More than one option? Not in Covered California, which replaced preferred doctors with no one at all, or sent people tens of miles away from their own communities for the few options left.  When employers changed insurers, moreover, they had a big incentive to find plans that also included their employees’ current providers — the employees themselves, who could walk away from the employer to find better coverage. In GovernmentCare, as Californians are discovering, that option doesn’t exist.

Americans who get health-insurance coverage through their employers have mostly avoided the market disruptions in the rollout of ObamaCare, but that’s probably going to change — and sooner than they think. A survey of large businesses, which should have the greatest stability in the market due to their clout in the market, shows that most businesses have already started forcing employees to pay higher deductibles, or will soon in order to cover the increased costs of the ObamaCare mandates (via the Daily Caller):

Four of five U.S. companies have raised deductibles or are considering doing so as health costs increase, according to a survey of more than 700 employers.

About one-third of the companies have already increased deductibles or other cost-sharing provisions like copays, and 48 percent are considering similar moves, the survey by New York-based consulting firm Mercer LLC found.

It’ll be difficult for Democrats and the White House to escape accountability for this, too, since one major driver for this impulse is an explicit goal of ObamaCare. The so-called Cadillac tax on high-end plans aimed at reducing higher provider demand created by highly-subsidized plans, which makes sense when attempting to add a large number of new risk-pool members at lower premium rates who might be inclined to make great use of the system in the first year or two. However, the disruptions caused by the Cadillac tax are both much broader than Democrats indicated, and will hit Americans much earlier than they hoped:

Employers with coverage exceeding $10,200 for individuals and $27,500 for families will be taxed 40 percent starting in 2018, on the theory that the plans boost medical costs.

About 62 percent of employers surveyed had concerns related to the so-called Cadillac tax. According to Mercer, 42 percent of employers would be subject to the tax in 2018 if they made no changes to their current plans.

Employers aren’t waiting to make changes, the survey found. Almost one in five employers have already dropped the plans and another 33 percent are considering dropping the coverage. Employers are turning instead to private exchanges, or consumer-directed health plans, which give employees personal health-care accounts.

Democrats had enough trouble with the individual-market disruptions, so much so that Barack Obama has been trying to postpone practically every other mandate in ObamaCare so as to avoid the political retribution. However, businesses have to plan for the future, not just react to the present, and the law clearly shows what the costs and risks will be in continuing with these plans — which probably produced a high degree of satisfaction with those consumers. Now they’re getting kicked out of those plans and will have to pay more for their medical care, not because of their employers’ greed but because Democrats are forcing them to do so.

By the way, guess what group of people are most responsible for ObamaCare enrollment failures. If you guess Republicans in Congress, you’re very, very wrong:

States that embraced the Affordable Care Act and created health care exchanges were supposed to lead the way in enrolling their residents in health insurance, but some of them are responsible for the federal government falling behind in its projections.

Only 18 days remain before the March 31 enrollment deadline, and the government is about 1.8 million behind its goal of 6 million new health insurance customers.

That’s because states such as Hawaii, Maryland and Oregon, all run by Democratic governors and legislatures supportive of the law, have had their exchanges falter and at times collapse.

Update: Edited the paragraph about Cadillac plans for clarity.

Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air



Trackback URL


Somebody needs to take this ridicutarded “law” out back and give it the Ole Yeller treatment.

Course, nobody is going to cry when it gets put down. Well, tears of joy maybe…

GrassMudHorsey on March 14, 2014 at 2:29 PM

“Only 18 days remain before the March 31 enrollment deadline, and the government is about 1.8 million behind its goal of 6 million new health insurance customers.”

BZZZZZZZZT. Double wrong.

First- cryptkeeper sebelius herself croaked out that “success looks like 7 million new subscribers by the deadline”. Which at the time, was December 31 of 2013. Here we are mid March 2014, and that number isn’t close to being possible. Nor is 6 million.

They claim 4.2 million “subscribers”. Can’t or won’t tell how many of these “subscribers” have paid their first or second premiums. Can’t or won’t tell how many of these “subscribers” are medicaid enrollees, which they could have done without obamacide. Can’t or won’t tell how many of these “subscribers” are people that had their uncancelable existing plans cancelled and are subscribing to obamacide now, which gives a net of ZERO (much like what earflaps has accomplished in the last 5 years) new subscribers.

In reality, probably about 500,000 or so actual new enrollees. Tops.

Which puts the cost per obamacide enrollee at a little better than what each new “saved or created” job cost us during the (anti)stimulus, but hardly “bending the cost curve down”, now is it Barry soetero?

Yeah, heckuva job there Earflaps McBracketfiller. Top freakin’ notch.

Now go make us all sammitches, you idiot.

GrassMudHorsey on March 14, 2014 at 2:39 PM

Imagine what it would be like if they didn’t love you.

rogerb on March 14, 2014 at 3:06 PM

Imagine what it would be like if they didn’t love you.

rogerb on March 14, 2014 at 3:06 PM

I once knew an Air Force General who treated everyone like absolute dogshiite – but a LtCol I knew who worked directly for him at a couple different assignments said “it’s bad if he doesn’t like you, but it’s a lot worse if he actually likes you”.

dentarthurdent on March 14, 2014 at 3:17 PM

He’s got nine for sure, the last one is still up for debate. It’s hard to believe anyone would willingly be that out of touch with reality, but I don’t know if anyone is smart enough to fake it.

Effay5 on March 14, 2014 at 12:16 PM

That is where

10. Sociopaths are delusional and literally believe that what they say will become truth.

comes into play.

Laura Castellano on March 14, 2014 at 5:22 PM

Totally OT but I’m loving this website I found yesterday.

neyney on March 14, 2014 at 11:20 AM

One of the topics on that headline agregator was absolutely On Topic:

by Fox News Insider // Mar 14 2014 // 11:46am
As seen on America’s Newsroom

A Health and Human Services official is making waves for his scathing resignation letter, calling the federal government “profoundly dysfunctional.”

David Wright, now the former head of the Office of Research Integrity (ORI), wrote that he was “offended as an American taxpayer” over the workings of the department. The ORI is responsible for monitoring misconduct in biomedical research….
Bill Hemmer got some reaction from Stuart Varney, who described the harsh letter as “devastating” for the government agency that is tasked with running ObamaCare. Varney pointed to a part of the letter where Wright complains that he needed to fill a position, but was unable to for 16 months.

Wright states that he was told of a “secret priority” list of candidates for the opening. He also wrote that he kept a daily log of his two years on the job and will be making it public.

“It will be a minefield for ObamaCare and the administration,” said Varney.

I missed this on the news; hope there are a few more principled agents like Wright.
Would be nice to have a couple of them in the IRS, NSA, DOJ, EPA — but I don’t want you all to think I’m a sociopath out of touch with reality.

AesopFan on March 14, 2014 at 5:51 PM

This is the demise of liberalism. And deliciously self-inflicted mortal wounds.

John the Libertarian on March 15, 2014 at 1:30 AM

“There weren’t as many shovel ready ready jobs as we thought” – BH Obama {laughing}

Hening on March 15, 2014 at 11:36 AM

We are governed by blatant idiots.

rplat on March 15, 2014 at 4:12 PM

they might end up having to switch doctors, in part because they’re saving money

These must be the ‘magical unicorn people’ who are now paying less. They all happen to have powers of invisibility, so that is why nobody has actually seen them.

I suppose the less-expensive doctors are also of the ‘magical unicorn’ sub-species (and hence invisible too), or maybe they are just ones who came to the US to escape prosecution for malicious negligent malpractice in their countries of origin.

Enjoy your new less-expensive healthcare provider!

s1im on March 15, 2014 at 4:34 PM

“For the average person, many folks who don’t have health insurance initially, they’re going to have to make some choices. And they might end up having to switch doctors,…”

If Obama is now trying to say that his keep your doctor keep your plan promises were referring to the uninsured I havea couple of questions.

1. Didn’t the average person already have health insurance before the ACA caused their plan to be cancelled.

2. Is anyone worrying about the uninsured being able to keep their doctors since they were either self-insured and can continue to see whomever they can afford or they were freeloading and have no basis for thinking they have a voice in the matter anyway.

Nomas on March 15, 2014 at 6:14 PM

“Affordable Care Act” is a typically Orwellian acronym for another pathetic and misguided government intrusion into the lives of Americans, who are better able to make their own decisions without the “assistance” of distant bureaucrats whose main interest lies in political gain at the expense of others.
“We’re from the government and we’re here to help.” Now pay up, and embrace the suck.

bobthm3 on March 15, 2014 at 6:15 PM

What Joe Wilson said

Farnsworth on March 15, 2014 at 8:56 PM

Who in the hell does he “think” he is?
He’s a big FAT liar, that’s who he is.

mmcnamer1 on March 16, 2014 at 10:31 AM

But you swore to the American people on national TV Obama, knowing you were lying. That is definite cause for impeachment. You liberals are all the same. Lying, nasty, criminal, scum. Voting is not the answer to rid ourselves of these criminals either. We know they cheat at the polls. Who’s to say that the elections aren’t completely rigged? Do you think it’s beyond possible with this criminal liar in office? It will take much more than elections to fix this country.

F_This on March 16, 2014 at 5:53 PM