Friday, December 04, 2009

"Health reform plan" spending is already zooming out of control -- and it's not even enacted yet. 

The Democratic authors of the health reform bill are still pretending that its cost will be financed 40% by cuts to Medicare -- not by reducing any Medicare services, of course, but by eliminating wasteful medical procedures, as determined by experts on medical cost efficiency.

What are the odds of that happening?

Well, experts on medical cost efficiency just last month determined that women should defer having regular mammograms until the age of 50.

Yesterday ...

Senate Blocks Use of New Mammogram Guidelines

Without a vote, the Senate agreed to accept an amendment to the big health care legislation ... effectively requiring the federal government to ignore the new recommendations by the expert panel. [NY Times]


...the Senate approved an amendment to its health care legislation that would require insurance companies to offer free mammograms and other preventive services to women...

The Democrats’ legislation had already contained requirements that insurers cover a wide range of preventive care. The amendment, put forward by Senator Barbara Mikulski, Democrat of Maryland, goes further, mandating coverage for a broader package of services for women.

“The insurance companies take being a woman as a pre-existing condition,” Ms. Mikulski said. “We face so many issues and hurdles. We can’t get health care"... [also the NY Times]

The politicians aren't getting this bill passed by reducing any benefit to any voter who wants it, nor by cutting any payment to any doctor or service provider that collects money for providing that benefit -- no matter how cost-inefficient it is.

We all know politicians buy votes by providing more benefits to interest groups at taxpayer expense -- no matter how cost inefficient the provision is.

Yet they are going to pay for fully 40% of the cost of the health care reform by slashing Medicare? Of course, only in ways to be named later, years from now, after the plan is in place?

Do you buy that?