My letter in the Globe: Mass experience refutes claim that health insurance mandate lowers costs

Friends – my letter appears in today’s Boston Globe:

Contain costs of health premiums

April 26, 2010

THE ASSOCIATED Press story on “4 million may face fine under health law” (Page A8, April 23) regarding the coming national health insurance mandate states that Democrats in Washington who support the mandate “point out that getting young, healthy Americans in the insurance pool will reduce costs for others.”

As someone who was on the staff of the Commonwealth Health Insurance Connector Authority from 2006 to 2010, I know this statement is not supported by the evidence here in Massachusetts, where an individual mandate has been in effect since 2007. Despite impressive gains in insurance coverage across all segments of the population, including the young and healthy, we continue to experience extraordinary annual increases in health premiums.

It’s concerning that national reform supporters in Washington are employing a talking point that the Massachusetts experience – on which national reform is closely modeled – so soundly refutes.

There are many good things to be said about Massachusetts’ pioneering health reform effort as it enters its fifth year of implementation, but it has not contained premium costs. The Legislature should step up and fine-tune it accordingly.

ERIC DAHLBERG

Chelmsford

The writer is a Republican candidate for state Senate in the Third Middlesex District.

Link to letter online is here:

Contain costs of health premiums

http://www.boston.com/bostongl…

About Eric R Dahlberg

  • The main difference is that the wheels are coming off of Obamacare much faster than in Mass.  After all, the Feds can’t rely on subsidies coming in from er, the federal government so it will be harder to hide the true costs.

    Here’s a post on the recent report from the Medicare actuary on the problems that have already arisen with Obamacare.

    http://healthcare.nationalrevi

    Nice letter.

  • RomneyCare/ObamaCare insures more people, but does little or nothing to control costs.

    US health care costs twice, per person, what health care costs in other industrialized countries, and our medical outcomes are worse in most regards.  This horribly hurts our worldwide economic competitiveness, because we have to spend and extra $3k per person per year for healthcare, making our workers way more expensive.

    We need to become competitive with foreign countries.

  • Eric and both comments so far are all repeating the observations Tim Cahill made several weeks ago while Baker of course continues to defend Romneycare and compete with Patrick for the endorsement of the granola crunching editors at the Boston Globe (in case you guys missed it…):

    http://www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/articles/2010/03/17/cahill_attacks_health_care_law/

  • Vote3rdpartynow

    It’s supply and demand.

    We have not increased the supply of health care at all.  There aren’t more doctors or hospitals as a result of Romney/Obama care.  But, we have increased the demand for healthcare because people who are forced to pay for it will now start using it more.  So what happens when you hold supply steady and increase demand?  Gee, higher healthcare costs…..  And nobody on Beacon Hill could figure this out?  Its economics 101…………..