Romneycare, the model of corporatist government mandated healthcare, was the model for Obamacare. Under Romneycare, Massachusetts has earned the honors of having the highest per capital healthcare spending of all 50 states.
Statehealthcarefact.org is probably the largest and most significant tracker of healthcare costs and data. Healthcare spending per state, here:
Alabama $6,272 Alaska $9,128 Arizona $5,434 Arkansas $6,167 California $6,238 Colorado $5,994 Connecticut $8,654 Delaware $8,480 District of C. $10,349 Florida $7,156 Georgia $5,467 Hawaii $6,856 Idaho $5,658 Illinois $6,756 Indiana $6,666 Iowa $6,921 Kansas $6,782 Kentucky $6,596 Louisiana $6,795 Maine $8,521 Maryland $7,492 Massachusetts $9,278 Michigan $6,618 Minnesota $7,409 Mississippi $6,571 Missouri $6,967 Montana $6,640 Nebraska $7,048 Nevada $5,735 New Hampshire $7,839 New Jersey $7,583 New Mexico $6,651 New York $8,341 North Carolina $6,444 North Dakota $7,749 Ohio $7,076 Oklahoma $6,532 Oregon $6,580 Pennsylvania $7,730 Rhode Island $8,309 South Carolina $6,323 South Dakota $7,056 Tennessee $6,411 Texas $5,924 Utah $5,031 Vermont $7,635 Virginia $6,286 Washington $6,782 West Virginia $7,667 Wisconsin $7,233 Wyoming $7,040
Generally, folks in Massachusetts are happy with Romneycare and the fact that over 98% of the folks are now insured. Massachusetts is now grappling with how to control and/or lower healthcare costs.
The mindset of Massachusetts government officials is to transform the system by moving away from the system of reimbursement for every procedure and toward a fixed cost system wherein insurers are paid a flat rate per patient regardless of medical services provided.
Massachusetts Tackles Health-Care Reform (Again)
In 2008, the Legislature established a blue-ribbon commission that one-year later issued a unanimous recommendation in favor of a major shift in how health care is executed in the state. It recommended the state shift away from a fee-for-service model, in which each medical procedure or test is paid for separately, to a global payments system, in which health-care providers are paid a fixed sum per patient.In 2008, the Legislature established a blue-ribbon commission that one-year later issued a unanimous recommendation in favor of a major shift in how health care is executed in the state. It recommended the state shift away from a fee-for-service model, in which each medical procedure or test is paid for separately, to a global payments system, in which health-care providers are paid a fixed sum per patient.This is a scary path because it also provides an incentive to insurers to deny medical services and to put profits above quality medical care. The Massachusetts legislature has two pending Romneycare reform bills, a house version and a senate version. Neither version will do much to solve the problem but an astute Republican observes that mandates are indeed the problem.
The idea behind global payments is to flip the incentives. No longer would providers be driven to maximize procedures and, in turn, maximize their reimbursements; instead, they would have an incentive to run a tight ship. The provider would benefit if the patient remains healthy.
Republican state Rep. Dan Winslow said he ended up voting for the House bill because it included a provision he'd sponsored, but he added his disappointment that the bills don't do more to cut down on coverage requirements. He urged more offerings of lower-cost, "plain cheese pizza options" for insurance, rather than ones with layers of mandated "toppings."
"Every mandate reflects a constituent interest group with lobbying dollars that fought to get a mandate in the bill, and when you attempt to peel it back, you get significant resistance," Winslow said.
Still, Winslow knows that the political winds are not on his party's side: Massachusetts has one of the most lopsidedly Democratic state Legislatures in the nation. "There's simply not enough of a Republican presence to cause friction -- it's more of a speed bump," he said.
Basically, Rep. Dan Winslow, who advocates for a free market healthcare system where consumers get to choose what they want to buy, understands that it's the mandates that are driving up healthcare costs and that all these absurd mandates are politically protected and untouchable because the beneficiaries of the mandates also fill Democrat campaign coffers.
If Massachusetts is having problems reining in the costly mandates, the pit of thieving vipers in the District of Crime (DC) is much, much larger and powerful. Already, the effects of Obamacare are translating into actual dollar figures for American families.
Morning Bell: Obamacare’s Soaring Price Tag
Most Americans know that medicine is getting more expensive, but a new survey puts a shocking sticker price on the rapid increase. The Kaiser Family Foundation and the Health Research and Educational Trust report that between 2010 and 2011, family premiums increased by 9 percent and for individual premiums by 8 percent. According to the survey, “The average premium for single coverage in 2011 is $452 per month or $5,429 per year … The average premium for family coverage is $1,256 per month or $15,073 per year."Median household income in the US is under $52,000, here. Yet, Americans will be forced to shell out nearly 30% of their annual income for Obamacare. Granted, many folks do have employer provided healthcare but its cost will continue to rise dramatically and have a very adverse effect on the economy and employees will be paying a whole lot more for health insurance coverage (the equivalent of a pay cut). Companies may simply decide that it is far more cost effective to relocate out of the US. Moreover, much of the heathcare costs born by taxpayers who can afford to pay for healthcare are in fact huge transfer payments.
The insanely expensive US healthcare costs are not shared by other nations and nations with single payer healthcare systems have healthier folks at a much lower cost, here.
Per Capital Healthcare cost by nation (2008 figures)
Something is radically wrong with America and the way we do things, nothing works and nothing is even remotely sane. America is truly a legalized kleptocracy full of rent seeking corporatist scoundrels who buy politicians in exchange for monopolies and protectionism.