Sean King

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Knoxville, Tennessee, United States

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Sally C. Pipes offers a glimpse...

...of the future under Obamacare:

The president's health reform plan establishes an astonishing number of new government bodies, including 47 bureaucratic entities and 29 pilot programs. It expands coverage not by making insurance more affordable but by putting millions of people on the government dole -- of the 34 million uninsured expected to obtain coverage, about 20 million will be dropped into Medicaid.

And Obamacare foists scores of expensive mandates on all private insurance plans -- like requiring all policies to cover adult children up to the age of 26 and limiting out-of-pocket spending.

The administration knows full well that these controls will disrupt the private market. In fact, they already have. Principal Financial Group announced that it would stop selling health insurance. The company covers about 840,000 people who get coverage through their employers.

Massachusetts-based Harvard Pilgrim also announced that it would quit offering Medicare Advantage plans to the 22,000 seniors it serves in Massachusetts, Maine and New Hampshire at year's end because of low reimbursement rates from the feds.

These folks would likely beg to differ with the president, who repeatedly promised during his campaign for reform that you could "keep your health plan if you like it." The administration now estimates that 117 million people will have to change their health plans by 2013.

Many employer-provided plans will become illegal overnight. The Lewin Group estimates that 17 million people will be forced out of their employer-sponsored health plans because of the new rules. Nearly 4 million of those folks will wind up in Medicaid.

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