Monday, October 17, 2011

Government Failure, Private Sector Success

The Obama administration has pulled the plug on the unsustainable CLASS program, which was a part of ObamaCare legislation intended to guarantee long-term care to patients.

As Philip Klein noted, this means "Half of Obamacare's deficit reduction wiped out":
As Obamacare's critics noted at the time, Democrats' deficit reduction claims were based on a series of accounting gimmicks. One of the most obvious was the inclusion of the Community Living Assistance and Support Services Act, a program that was slated to collect five years of premiums before paying out any benefits. Though it was unsustainable over time, on paper it produced surpluses during the Congressional Budget Office's 10-year budget window.

At the time of final passage, the CBO found that the health care law would reduce deficits by $143 billion, and $70 billion of that was attributable to the CLASS program.
In contrast, a friend reminded me of this older story from the 2009 Wall Street Journal, on medical tourism for heart surgery.

Their story, "The Henry Ford of Heart Surgery", describes the success that Dr. Devi Shetty has had in creating hospitals that cater to heart surgery patients from around the world. If ObamaCare is fully implemented in the US, such overseas facilities will become increasingly attractive to Americans unable to get such care here at home.

And BTW, Dr. Shetty's work has earned him The Economist's 2011 award for business-process innovation.