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FACT CHECK: Health Care Prices Soared Under Democrats’ Broken Health Care Law

April 05, 2022

Democrats are celebrating the 12-year anniversary of their partisan health care law that led to higher prices and families losing coverage and access to their doctors, among other big problems. Here are the facts.

Democrats’ broken health care law meant higher prices:

  • The average price paid for health insurance (“premiums”) jumped by 143 percent between 2013 and 2019.
  • At the same time that premiums more than doubled in the individual market, deductibles for ACA-compliant coverage also increased by an average of 35% — over $1,700 for individuals and $3,600 for families.
  • Over 10 years, spending on health care per person increased by 28.7 percent.

Democrats’ $2 trillion so-called stimulus increased prices further, with greater subsidies for higher-income earners:

  • President Biden’s partisan so-called COVID stimulus expanded subsidies for health care that only pushed up prices and premiums, benefiting relatively higher-income people (above 400 percent of the poverty level), many of whom are already insured.

Democrats unleashed more fraud, with $100 billion per year in improper federal Medicaid payments:

  • According to recent analysis published by the Mercatus Center’s Brian Blase and University of Kentucky economist Aaron Yelowitz, the inspector general at the Department of Health and Human Services found that “systemic errors include neglecting to obtain proper documentation; failing to properly verify income eligibility; misclassifying individuals, including into the newly eligible category; and failing to properly verify citizenship.” (Read more in Brian Blase’s National Review article, “Reality Check: The Increasing Cost of Papering Over Obamacare’s Problems.”)

Fewer insurers offer coverage on ACA exchanges than prior to the law’s passage, and with narrower networks:

  • ACA plans on average have narrower networks that don’t always cover the best hospitals and doctors.
  • By 2021, over 80 percent of bronze and silver plans were considered “more restrictive” when it comes to provider access – up from just over 40 percent in 2014.
  • In Texas, Houston’s world-renowned M. D. Anderson Cancer Center is excluded from coverage under ACA.

Americans aren’t clamoring for Democrats’ junk ACA plans:

  • Despite $50 billion of annual subsidies, enrollment in Obamacare individual-market plans has always been far below projections. From 2015 to 2020, exchange enrollment averaged only about 10 million people — about 60 percent below the 25 million enrollees that the Congressional Budget Office projected in May 2013 in its last analysis before Obamacare’s key provisions took effect.

President Biden’s effort to rewrite the law without working with Congress shows Democrats know it’s broken:

  • Instead of working across the aisle to lower the true cost of health care, the Biden Administration has continued to fuel higher premiums with increased and expanded subsidies.
  • Now President Biden wants to illegally change the enacted law through executive order.

Yes, Republicans support coverage for Americans with pre-existing conditions:

Congress can deal with the fallout of Democrats’ health care law. 

  • Republicans have laid out approaches to addressing the worst impacts of Democrats’ broken health care law here.