Unbiased Analysis of Today's Healthcare Issues

Are Obamacare health plans a good deal?

Marketplace Money reports that a PwC study finds that Obamacare plans are actually lower cost than comparable plans outside the Health Insurance Exchanges. “That’s one of the misperceptions out there. That somehow they are barebones or you are not really getting adequate medical insurance,” she says. Connolly says even when you factor in all the […]

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Should single-payer countries subsidize private insurance?

In many countries with universal public health insurance, the government also provides subsidies for private insurance.  Examples of this practice include Australia, Spain and the United Kingdom.  Why do they do this?  Is it a good idea? There are arguments on both sides. Public subsidies are good.  Public subsidies for private insurance can stimulate the […]

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Does Health Insurance Improve Health?

In Burkina Faso, the answer is ‘no‘. According to Fink et al. (2013): Our results suggest that the insurance had limited effects on average out-of-pocket expenditures in the target areas, but substantially reduced the likelihood of catastrophic health expenditure. The introduction of the insurance scheme did not have any effect on health outcomes for children […]

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Will the ACA cause employers to drop health insurance coverage?

As describe in this recent Health Affairs article, as of 2011, your likelihood of being offered health insurance looked like this:   Courtesy of Health Affairs. How will the ACA affect the share of individuals who receive coverage (and what type of insurance coverage they receive). This table describes some of the consequences.   Courtesy […]

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Health Reform in China

What is health insurance like in China?  A 2011 paper by Zhong in Health Economics provides a nice overview, which I discuss in today’s post. Between the 1950s and the end of the 1970s, three primary insurance schemes covered almost all Chinese citizens. Cooperative Medical System (CMS).  This program existed in 90% of Chinese villages.  […]

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Los Angeles and San Diego Health Care Markets

The California Healthcare Foundation has produced two market studies of the Los Angeles and San Diego health care markets. Key findings from the Los Angeles study include: The area’s dense urban environment has given rise to a large, fragmented health care market. Health care reform and a drop in private insurance enrollment have led to […]

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UnitedHealth Group to Reveal Healthcare Prices?

According to The Hartford Courant: UnitedHealthcare launched a newer online program that allows 14 million of its members to compare current prices of medical services, including how much a patient will pay out of pocket. The program is specialized to show how much the insurer would pay, and how much the patient would pay based […]

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Healthcare Costs to Rise by over 7 percent in 2013

Reuters reports on a PwC study evaluating health care premium growth. “The cost of healthcare services is expected to rise 7.5 percent in 2013, more than three times the projected rates for inflation and economic growth, according to an industry research report released on Thursday. But premiums for large employer-sponsored health plans could increase by […]

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Heroes without Health Insurance

This weekend is Memorial Day Weekend.  It is a time to celebrate the service of current and former members of the military. Although military veterans garner a lot of attention around Memorial Day, some veterans are not having their needs met the rest of the year. A recent study, for instance, finds that many veterans […]

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How to drop the individual mandate and avoid the collapse of the private health insurance market

Today, the Supreme Court is deciding  whether to let many of the provisions of the Affordable Care Act (a.k.a. ACA, a.k.a. Health Reform, a.k.a. Obamacare) stand.  One of the key provisions is the individual mandate.  The individual mandate requires all individuals to purchase health insurance.  If you don’t buy health insurance, you must pay a […]

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