CBO Says Reform Will Increase – Not Decrease – Federal Health Care Spending

In the relentless stream of bad news about health care “reform”, this comes in from The Washington Post (emphasis mine): 

CBO Chief Criticizes Democrats’ Health Reform Measures
Director Says Proposed Changes Would Increase Health Care Spending

 Instead of saving the federal government from fiscal catastrophe, the health reform measures being drafted by congressional Democrats would increase rather than reduce public spending on health care, potentially worsening an already bleak budget outlook, the director of the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office said this morning.

 Under questioning by members of the Senate Budget Committee, CBO director Douglas Elmendorf said bills crafted by House leaders and the Senate health committee do not propose “the sort of fundamental changes that would be necessary to reduce the trajectory of federal health spending by a significant amount.”

 “On the contrary,” Elmendorf said, “the legislation significantly expands the federal responsibility for health-care costs.”

 Though President Obama and Democratic leaders have said repeatedly that reining in the skyrocketing growth in spending on government health programs such as Medicaid and Medicare is their top priority, the reform measures put forth so far would not fulfill their pledge to “bend the cost curve” downward, Elmendorf said. Instead, he said, “The curve is being raised.”

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