The history of government-run health care

This is a very good piece from Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) on the dismal history of government-run healthcare – Medicaid and Medicare. Since Issa is an “insider” to this mess, he probably has a better idea than most.

When all is said and done, President Obama’s plan mandates dozens of new entitlement programs and creates scores of new government offices, bureaus, commissions, and programs, all of which will have to be funded, staffed and managed at taxpayer cost.

Moreover, an expansion of the federal bureaucracy at that rate will greatly increase the incidence of waste, fraud and abuse in health care. Already Medicare, which accounts for 14% of all federal spending, is rife with waste, fraud and abuse. Even Attorney General Eric Holder has said, “By all accounts, every year we lose tens of billions of dollars in Medicare and Medicaid funds to fraud.”

A recent analysis by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) estimated that federal subsidy programs cost taxpayers about $100 billion every year in improper payments, with Medicare and Medicaid accounting for more than half of that. Harvard Professor Malcolm Sparrow, a specialist in health care fraud teaching at the Kennedy School of Government, has estimated that as much as 20% of the federal health program budgets – or approximately $150 billion – is eaten up by improper payments every year.

How long would a company stay in business if it was losing 20% to waste, fraud and abuse? Not long to be sure, but this is government we’re talking about. Whatever is lost is simply replenished from the pockets of taxpayers. Adding more levels of wasteful bureaucracy to an already bloated system is no skin off their back – but it is skin off your back.

Obamacare is not about making the system better. It’s about more government power and control – and saving our dear comrade leader’s “legacy.”


2 Responses to “The history of government-run health care”

  1. Glad you caught this and posted it. I have always believed that the health care bill that no doubt will become law has increased the cost to the average citizen beyond what the government is wiling to either admit or pass along to the COB.

    They continue to handle negotiations with physicians re reimbursements.

    They cleverly delayed immigration reform that will add even more people t the program.

    • Thanks, Sam. Issa makes some good points but I really think this massive turd is going to pass no matter what. Once this gets through the door, the legislative tsunami will continue.

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