Even plenty of U.S. fans of “single-payer health care” — government-run systems for paying for care — prefer the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (PPACA) and the PPACA exchange system to what the country had in 2009.
But single-payer system supporters were attacking the legislation that became PPACA from the left even as it jolted through Congress.
Today, now that the PPACA underwriting rules, benefits mandates and exchange system have come to life, they have new data, based on observations of PPACA World, to add to their critiques.
Two single-payer advocates, Dr. David Himmelstein and Dr. Steffie Woolhandler, the co-founders of Physicians for a National Health Program, have published a commentary blasting the PPACA exchange system on the website of Health Affairs, a health finance and health care delivery academic journal.
PPACA defenders argue that members of Congress had to balance the interests of insurers, health care providers, patients, taxpayers and other parties when they created the current system, and that the current system lets consumers with health problems pay the same price for private coverage that healthy consumers pay. Defenders also point out that the implementation of the PPACA Medicaid expansion program and the PPACA exchange program led to a big, immediate decrease in the U.S. uninsurance rate in 2014.
For a look at what Himmelstein and Woolhandler say about PPACA, read on.
1. The average cost of getting uninsured people covered is high.
PPACA-related administration costs added about $17 billion to U.S. health care spending in 2014 and will add about $26 billion to spending this year, Himmelstein and Woolhandler estimate.