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Common $ense 
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Re: “In defense of health care

*** A little knowledge goes a long way ***

The Affordable Care Act Did Not Cause Unjust Premium Increases
Posted by Stephanie Cutter on September 08, 2010 at 01:51 PM EST
Today’s Wall Street Journal reports that some health insurance companies are blaming the Affordable Care Act for premium increases that were planned long before the law was passed. We knew this would happen, which is why the President called on insurance companies not to use the Affordable Care Act as an excuse to implement unreasonable premium increases. In fact, when one insurance company in the State of Washington was called out for telling its beneficiaries that rate increases were due to the Affordable Care Act, that company agreed to issue a new letter clarifying the reasons for the increase.

The premium increases discussed today – many of which were planned before the Affordable Care Act was even signed into law– demonstrate that reform came at a critical time. In fact, consumers have faced unreasonable double digit premium increases for more than a decade, including employer-sponsored plans where premiums have more than doubled since 2000.

The most recent round of premium increase announcements are at odds with a number of health care cost related projections. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that medical inflation is currently projected to be 3.2 percent this year. Similarly, The Kaiser Family Foundation concluded that family premiums were rising only 3 percent for this year. Finally, we estimate that any potential premium impact from the new consumer protections and increased quality provisions under the Affordable Care Act will be minimal – no more than 1-2 percent -- which will be further offset by other out of pocket savings implemented in the law.

Posted by Common $ense on 01/06/2011 at 10:11 AM


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