Unbiased Analysis of Today's Healthcare Issues

The cost of allowing kids to remain dependents up to 26 years

Many of the provisions of the Affordable Care Act include provisions requiring health insurers to do certain things.  Variability of premiums are regulated, certain services are mandated (e.g., free annual check-up) and minimum benefits packages are set on the health insurance exchanges.  One seemingly innocuous provision of the ACA is that children are allowed to remain […]

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Republicans supported health insurance mandates?

Although Democrats favor an individual mandate as part of health reform, Merrill Goozner notes that a Republican Congress passed a “voluntary” Medicare Part D drug program with its own mandate.  The program charges one percentage point increase in the premium for every year the senior stays out of the program.  This lead Goozner to conclude […]

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California Health Benefits Review Program

If California were to enact a mandate for insurance companies to cover certain services, how much would this cost?  How would it affect public health?  Would utilization change? To answer these questions, the California legislature charged the California Health Benefits Review Program (CHBRP) to estimate the medical effectiveness, public health and cost implications of proposed […]

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The Cost of Health Insurance Mandates

Health insurance mandates increase health insurance cost.  By compelling insurance companies to cover certain medical treatments, cost inevitably rise.  Of course the people who receive these treatments benefit while those who do not must pay additional premiums.  A recent paper by the Pacific Research Institute summarizes the findings of various studies of the impact of […]

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Health Insurance Subsidies (a.k.a Higher Marginal Tax Rates)

The health reform bills currently propose introduce health insurance subsidies for individuals who do not qualify for health insurance provided by the government.  The goal of these subsidies is to make health insurance more affordable for the lower and middle class. The subsidies gradually decrease for higher income levels. In “Obama’s Prescription for Low-Wage Workers,” […]

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Tanner on Obamacare

Cato Institute Senior Fellow Michael Tanner is not a big fan of some health care reforms that are being proposed.  He reviews recent health reform proposals in his Obamacare article.  I review a few of his arguments below. Employer Mandate.  Tanner believes employer mandates are a bad idea and I wholeheartedly agree.  Large firms can […]

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Mandatory Seat Belt laws

A recent paper in the May 2008 edition of the Journal of Health Economics by Carpentera and Stehr finds that mandatory seat belt laws save lives. “…we find consistent evidence that state mandatory seatbelt laws – particularly those permitting primary enforcement – significantly increased seatbelt use among high school age youths by 45–80%, primarily at […]

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No on Mandates

Merrill Goozner has an interesting post (“Unfair and Unbalanced Wonkery on Mandates“) arguing that insurance mandates aren’t good policy (I agree with him on this). For the record: I’m opposed to mandates for two reasons. First and foremost, they’re bad politics. Americans don’t like to be told to do anything. They especially don’t like unfunded […]

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