Patterico's Pontifications

9/9/2015

The Premature Gloating of ObamaCare’s Fans

Filed under: General,Health Care,Obama — JVW @ 4:15 pm

[guest post by JVW]

This past spring and summer saw progressives giddy with triumph concerning the alleged success of ObamaCare in enrolling new customers. From academics to the usual interest groups to the President himself, we were deluged with stories about all the wonderful things that the Health Care Act had done for the country. With Chief Justice Roberts’ majority opinion in the King vs. Burwell case seeming to settle the issue of the bill’s legality, those who remained skeptical of the ability of the government to efficiently manage health policy in a nation of 330 million people were told to “get over it,” even by some on our own side.

But, as the saying goes, that was then. Yesterday’s Washington Post contained an interesting piece informing us that roughly a quarter of the people who chose a health plan this year through ObamaCare have since stopped paying for it. Of 12.7 million people who took out a plan in 2015, only 9.9 million were continuing to make payments by the end of June. This drop-off is significant numerically, and does not bode well for the big push coming next year as explained by the author:

For next year, congressional budget analysts are estimating that 21 million Americans will have health insurance through the exchanges — more than double the enrollment now.

Many health policy experts think that, in the two years since the marketplaces opened, they already have attracted the people who are easiest to enroll. Elizabeth Carpenter, a vice president of the consulting firm Avalere Health, said that the Congressional Budget Office has been assuming that sign-ups for 2016 will surge, because financial penalties will increase under a part of the law that requires most Americans to carry health insurance.

“The question is,” Carpenter said, “given where we are today, should we expect a slower ramp-up?”

Couple that with the expected rise in premiums forecast for next year which is once again likely to outpace the rise in family income, and 2016 could be a very important year for the future of government-managed health care, even apart from the matter of which party does well in the fall elections.

Addendum: Hat tip to Powerline for the link to the WaPo story.

– JVW

16 Responses to “The Premature Gloating of ObamaCare’s Fans”

  1. Raising the poverty level. Borrowing from Medicare. Raising taxes. Preserving the status quo. What could possibly go right?

    n.n (f39afe)

  2. Hello.

    And wait for the “Cadillac” plan tax, coming the first tax season Obama leaves office. When people file their taxes for 2016 in early 2017 and see what happens when for millions of Americans what would have been a tax refund turn into a tax bill, People are going to flip the eff out. By design the feds are going to tax a lot of people’s employer-provided benefits,item DD in box 12 of your W2. There’s no reason for that-unless you treat it as income. As Obamacare will.

    Bugg (137ba5)

  3. my deductible so high

    how high is it happy

    think barry obama at 15

    damn happy you do got yourself one mighty high deductible

    it’s a sadness and a tragedy I tell you what

    happyfeet (831175)

  4. If you like your delusions, you can keep them.

    ropelight (5ea509)

  5. we were deluged with stories about all the wonderful things that the Health Care Act had done for the country

    National Soros Radio is still at it day in and day out

    here’s a few of today’s steaming soros butt nuggets of propaganda

    There’s a lot of evidence that the meals school cafeterias are serving have gotten healthier (!) since new federal nutrition standards were rolled out.
    And another study shows kids are tossing less food away.(!)

    they links some stupid study saying that from 2012-2014

    “the percentage of students choosing fruit significantly increased from 54% to 66%” (woo hoo!)

    *but*

    “the proportion of students who chose a vegetable dropped from 68% to 52%” :(

    but here’s the kicker:

    “Entrée consumption increased significantly from 71% to 84%, thereby also decreasing waste.”

    (the unending and seriously deep fascination liberals have with waste trash excrement and garbage is truly truly bizarre and you have to wonder if it’s uniquely failmerican in its intensity)

    but okeydokey we’ve established people are eating a bite or two of their entree in the past two years, thereby also decreasing waste!

    but scroll down a few paragraphs

    The requirement that students must take 1/2 cup [of fruit or vegetable] with every single breakfast and lunch has increased waste and costs, leaving schools with less funding to invest in more expensive, appealing choices,” the SNA position paper states.

    and National Soros Radio doesn’t tell you what backs up the claim that these weirdo obamacare lunch policies are resulting in a lot of waste, but the factsheet it comes from is here [PDF]

    Mandating that students must take a fruit or vegetable with every meal increases waste by
    with an estimated $684 million thrown away each year

    the title of the article is hilarious all by itself

    Class Divide: Are More Affluent Kids Opting Out Of School Lunch?

    happyfeet (831175)

  6. So the Govt creates a “virtual monopoly” and is celebrating its economic success?

    Too funny.

    Um, what about the 40MM still uninsured?

    Rodney King's Spirit (ab8c0d)

  7. Honestly, bragging about people signing up for something they’re required to by law was always rather stupid. Couple that with the fact that the number was still well-below the vaunted number of previously uninsured. I should know; I’m one of the previously uninsured and have avoided that trainwreck like the plaque.

    As for the main story, well, I just think of my dad. He signed up for Obamacare this year–explicitly saying he’d get some tests done and then drop it. Evidently, a lot of people had the same plan.

    tops116 (d094f8)

  8. a bite or two *more* I mean and the last quote got garbled but u can click linker above it

    happyfeet (831175)

  9. What they NEVER say is that most of the signups are heavily subsidized. People who aren’t subsidized pursue other options — off-exchange companies have to follow the same rules, but maybe don’t have the same kind of customer load.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  10. There are all kinds of ways to game the system, too. Premiums, and within a narrow window, copays and deductibles, are pegged to income. If, say, you retired at 60 with a pile of money to live off of, you can realize just enough income during the year to make it into the near-zero-cost subsidy brackets.

    In what is called an Enhanced Silver 94 plan, your co-pays are $5 (sometimes $3), your deductible is a few hundred and you max OOP is about $1000. And the government pays almost all the premium.

    Never mind that you’re driving a Mercedes and living on the beach. Just so long as your income is about $25K for the year it’s all on Uncle Sam!

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  11. BTW, you cannot buy an exchange plan equal to a Silver 94 plan, no matter how much you pay. Reserved only for the poor and people who make themselves look like they’re poor.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  12. Remember this narrative: all good things are credited to the Democrats, and all bad things are credited to Republicans. So, Dems take credit for more people covered, while they ascribe all the problem (high deductibles, high premiums, rich CEOs feasting on the sadness of seniors eating dog food and warmed by candles) to Republicans because Republicans are rich and they hate (half) black presidents.

    denver todd (917eea)

  13. What they NEVER say is that most of the signups are heavily subsidized.

    Yeah, I don’t think you are supposed to be pointing this out. 2016 should be interesting.

    BTW, JVW, nice to see you posting. Good job.

    Dana (86e864)

  14. What they NEVER say is that most of the signups are heavily subsidized.

    The article doesn’t explicitly mention this, but they allude to it when they point out that the 10 million who have purchased health policies on ObamaCare exchanges so far represent the low-hanging fruit of people who we are to infer got nice subsidies and thus were able to pay for plans. That 25% of them are quitting should therefore be considered an ominous sign. And, as the article points out, they need to get another 10 million new enrollees during next period, and I’m guessing that that segment is heavily comprised of those who don’t qualify for subsidies. Lot of luck with that.

    One of the whole ideas about paying for ObamaCare was that these young healthy folks who don’t consume much health care would buy policies that would help subsidize those who are older or with preexisting conditions. How’s that gonna work out, you healthy young millennials?

    And of course here in California we are trying to figure out how to add illegal immigrants to the pool. Social justice, and all that dontcha’ know.

    JVW (ba78f9)

  15. sign-ups for 2016 will surge, because financial penalties will increase under a part of the law that requires most Americans to carry health insurance.

    LOL. Reminds me of “the beatings will continue until morale improves.”

    Patricia (5fc097)

  16. And of course here in California we are trying to figure out how to add illegal immigrants to the pool.

    But we were told that could NEVER happen! They supposedly wrote that directly into the bill.

    Kevin M (25bbee)


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