Thursday, July 28, 2011

Report: Health care law has limited impact on spending

WASHINGTONThe 2010 federal health care law will have little effect on the nation's rising health spending in the next decade, a government report said Thursday.

The report by the Medicare Office of the Actuary estimated that health spending will grow by an average of 5.8 percent a year through 2020, compared to 5.7 percent without the health care overhaul. With that growth, the nation is expected to spend $4.6 trillion on health care in 2020, nearly double the $2.6 trillion spent last year.

Health care law critics said the report confirmed their concerns.

"Most of us understood the health reform law was about expanding coverage, not cutting costs," said Joseph Antos, a health policy expert at the conservative-leaning American Enterprise Institute.

The 2010 law will expand health insurance coverage to 30 million Americans.

White House Deputy Chief of Staff Nancy-Ann DeParle said the report showed Americans were getting a good deal.

"The bottom line from the report is clear: more Americans will get coverage and save money and health expenditure growth will remain virtually the same," she said on the White House blog........

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