It won’t control health costs. A few months after the health care law passed, former White House advisers touted the law’s cost controls: The law, they wrote in the New England Journal of Medicine, “puts into place virtually every cost-control reform proposed by physicians, economists, and health policy experts.” Apparently it wasn’t enough, even for the law’s backers. A group of prominent liberal supporters of Obamacare recently launched a new effort to control health spending. The Washington Post reported that “While all support the Affordable Care Act, they tend to agree that additional legislation will be necessary to control health-care costs.”
It won’t lower premiums for everyone. During his first presidential campaign, Obama pitched his health care overhaul as a way to “lower premiums by up to $2,500 for a typical family per year.” But average family premiums have continued to rise since Obamacare passed, insurers and actuaries are warning that they’ll rise even higher as the law kicks in, and even Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius now says that some premiums will rise under the law. Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) also seems to think the law could cause premiums to spike.
It won’t reduce emergency room usage amongst the poor. One of the arguments for the law was that it would reduce emergency room utilization by giving low-income individuals Medicaid coverage that would allow them to see a doctor instead. But according to a study published this week, a randomized controlled trial found that giving individuals Medicaid does not reduce emergency room usage.