According to a report funded by the insurance industry, premiums for health insurance would rise by $4000 by 2019 under the Baucus bill, which is set to go to a vote by the Senate Finance Committee on Tuesday. From CNN:
The report raised new questions about the political viability of the 10-year, $829 billion compromise bill drafted under the guidance of Sen. Max Baucus, D-Montana, chairman of the Senate Finance Committee.
The Finance Committee is expected to vote on the plan Tuesday. The vote represents a potential turning point in the health care debate. Baucus' committee is the last of five congressional panels to consider health care legislation before debate begins in the full House of Representatives and Senate.
The report from the group America's Health Insurance Plans concludes that, under the Baucus plan, the costs of private health insurance would rise by 111 percent over the next decade. Under the current system, costs would rise by 79 percent, the report said.
Premiums for individuals could rise by an extra $1,500 if the Baucus plan is implemented, the report said.
he White House blasted the report Monday, calling it inaccurate and self-serving.
"This is a self-serving analysis from the insurance industry, one of the major opponents of health insurance reform," White House spokesman Reid Cherlin said.
"It comes on the eve of a vote that will reduce the industry's profits. It is hard to take it seriously. The analysis completely ignores critical policies [that] will lower costs for those that have insurance, expand coverage and provide affordable health insurance options to millions of Americans who are priced out of today's health insurance market or are locked out by unfair insurance company practices."
Finance Committee spokesman Scott Mulhauser called the analysis "a health insurance company hatchet job — plain and simple."
The analysis from America's Health Insurance Plans, first reported by The Washington Post, was conducted by the firm PricewaterhouseCoopers.
A separate analysis last week from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office concluded that the Baucus bill would reduce the national deficit by slightly more than $80 billion over the next decade.
It's good to know on the eve of the Baucus vote that the insurance industry is looking out for Mr. and Mrs. John Q. Public.