Everybody likes to rank things.
It is a common complaint that Nevada is atop all the bad lists and at the bottom of all the good lists.
Michael Tanner of the Cato Institute finds Nevada is atop a bad list when it comes to the impact of the health care reform legislation commonly labeled ObamaCare.
Starting in 2011 states will be required to extend Medicaid coverage to all citizens with income below 133 percent of the property level. Initially the federal government will pick up the cost, but in 2017 states will have to begin to pay a portion of the costs, which may be even higher than projected because many high-risk demographics will be covered.
Tanner calculated the impact on each state as a percent of each state’s general fund. The hardest hit would be Texas, followed by Mississippi, and, you guessed it, Nevada.
In a pamphlet titled “Bad Medicine: A Guide to the Real Costs and Consequences of the New Health Care Law,” Tanner concludes that instead of saving money and lowering the federal debt that the program will cost $2.7 trillion over 10 years (not less than $1 trillion as the CBO said) and add $352 billion to the national debt (not cut the debt by $138 billion). This does not even take into account more than $4.3 trillion in costs shifted to businesses, individuals, and state governments.
He calculated the law will increase taxes by more than $669 billion by 2019, leave 21 million uninsured, millions will not be able to keep their current insurers, lead to rationing of care, and cause the insurance rates for some go up even faster.
As for the much-maligned talk of “death panels,” Tanner, right, has this to say:
“Clearly the trajectory of U.S. health care spending under this law is unsustainable. Therefore, it raises the inevitable question of whether it will lead to rationing down the road.
“We should be clear, however. With a few minor exceptions governing Medicare reimbursements, the law would not directly ration care or allow the government to dictate how doctors practice medicine. There is no ‘death panel’ as Sarah Palin once wrote about in her Facebook posting. Even so, by setting in place a structure of increased utilization and rising costs, the new law makes government rationing far more likely in the future.”
Download the pamphlet.
Buy a hard copy.
Listen to a podcast with Tanner: