Friday, October 22, 2004

A Closer Look at Bush's Attacks on Kerry's Health Care Plan

A Closer Look at Bush's Attacks on Kerry's Health Care Plan:
"Bush said the Kerry plan “involves bigger and more intrusive government, expand the government’s health care rolls by nearly 22 million, … the largest expansion of government health care in American history, 8 out of 10 people would be placed on a government program” and small businesses would have the incentive to drop their private insurance and throw people into government programs. He said the Kerry plan would cost $1.2 trillion"


Mr. Kerry’s plan has three main elements:
an expansion of Medicaid and the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, both programs for the poor, so that all children and more low-income adults would be covered;
an arrangement so individuals and small businesses not now eligible for group plans could buy private insurance now available to federal employees;
and government rebates to employers to cover most of the cost of catastrophic health insurance claims (over $30,000 per beneficiary in 2006).

Asked if this would amount to a government run health system in the United States, John Sheils, a vice president of the Lewin Group, an independent consulting firm, said, “No, I don’t think so. 97 percent of the people who have insurance now would have the same coverage.”

The Lewin Group found that the Kerry plan would put more than 20 million new people under government health coverage which was mentioned by Mr. Bush in last week’s presidential debate.

It would hardly be the largest expansion of government health insurance in history, much less than the introduction of Medicare and Medicaid in the 1960’s and involving fewer people than even Mr. Bush’s legislation enacted last year to offer prescription drug coverage under Medicare. The vast majority of the 20 million would be children in low-income families.

The plan would actually make health insurance less expensive for small businesses. They would be able to take a tax credit to offset 50 percent of the cost of offering employees coverage and because the catastrophic coverage would lower the payments for premiums…
con·cept: A Closer Look at Bush's Attacks on Kerry's Health Care Plan