The Institute for Policy Innovation’s Merrill Matthews and Mark Litow, past chairman of the Social Insurance Public Finance Section of the Society of Actuaries, in an op-ed for the Wall Street Journal (1/14, Matthews, Litow, Subscription Publication), titled, “ObamaCare’s Health-Insurance Sticker Shock,” predicts that Americans’ healthcare insurance premiums will spike this year due to the implementation of the Affordable Care Act. The authors point out that residents of the eight states that have rules similar to the ACA’s regarding how much more, if at all, insurers can charge policyholders with preexisting conditions, as well as which conditions must be covered at no extra expense to the policyholder, have seen their premiums rise more than residents in states with less regulated insurance markets. The authors note that analysts have concluded that residents of those states with the least expensive health insurance will face the biggest increases this year due to the ACA.
The Wall Street Journal (1/14, Subscription Publication), in an editorial explores President Obama’s meaning when, in the fiscal cliff talks with Speak Boehner, he asserted: “We don’t have a spending problem. We have a health-care problem.” The Journal contends that the President is acknowledging that the cost-control policies built into the ACA have failed to make the trajectory of anticipated future healthcare spending increases in the US any less steep than it had been before 2010.