"The main focus of our analysis is assessing access to primary-care physicians under the health-care law. The reason for this focus is twofold: first, we already know that we will be facing a primary-care shortage in the coming years, so understanding the role that Obamacare plays in affecting the shortage is important; second, much of the law was motivated by the argument that expanding access to inexpensive (or free) preventive care and primary care physicians would ultimately bend the curve of health-care spending."
"For Obamacare to succeed, American doctors need to earn less money. Last week, Washington took a step in that direction. One of Medicare’s influential advisory boards recommended that payment rates to providers be sanded down."
"In recent weeks, I've talked to a handful of large healthcare firms and medical practices that offer specialty medical services. I asked them what kinds of prices they're soliciting from the new health plans now taking shape under Obamacare. These providers said that they're demanding, and in some cases securing, pretty rich reimbursement rates from the new, Obamacare health plans."
"The power given by Congress to the Independent Payment Advisory Board is breathtaking. Congress has willingly abandoned its power to make tough spending decisions (how and where to cut) to an unaccountable board that neither the legislative branch nor the president can control. The law has also entrenched the board's decisions to an unprecedented degree."
"If all states implement the Affordable Care Act, 18 million more people will be enrolled in Medicaid by the end of 2016. Even if some states opt out, the program is poised for a huge expansion. But having insurance does not guarantee access to health care. Policymakers need to explore and reduce the barriers Medicaid patients face as millions join an already overburdened system."
"Obamacare’s new insurance marketplaces for small businesses, which have already stumbled before getting out of the gate, are facing another pressing question just months before millions can sign up for benefits: What happens if insurers don’t show up to sell? Early looks at insurance offerings on the Obamacare exchanges show that insurers aren’t exactly signing up in droves to sell on the new Small Business Health Option Program exchanges."
"The bottom line: Thousands of newly minted MDs may be unable to find work as doctors while wrestling with enormous student loans. The median debt for medical students in 2012 was $170,000, according to the Association of American Medical Colleges. 'We’re looking at the reality of medical students in 2016 graduating and having no residency programs available,' said Christiane Mitchell, AAMC director of federal affairs. 'If you can’t guarantee residencies, then our best and brightest may look elsewhere.'"
"For years I have been writing about the failures of the United Kingdom’s National Health Service as a warning for what the Affordable Care Act will do to health care here in the U.S. London’s Daily Mail has chronicled the problems with the NHS, which include declining quality of care and availability of services coupled with increased costs. This is what is in store for us, if Congress does not repeal Obamacare."
"A closer examination of these health plans reveals a less rosy picture. Although the premiums are lower than some anticipated, this has been achieved by designing the plans around much more limited provider networks and including greater cost-sharing than the typical commercial health-insurance plan. The premiums for the policies that will be offered on the states' exchanges are much higher than analogous plans being sold today."
"The National Association of Insurance Commissioners says it is hearing that many carriers will cancel policies and issue new ones because administratively that is easier than changing existing plans. About 14 million Americans currently purchase their health policies individually, a number expected to more than double eventually because of the new law's subsidies and one-stop insurance markets. But the transition may not be seamless."