The Chicago Way: Obama Reaches Not-So-Secret Deal to Not Push Down Pharmaceutical Prices Any Further; In Exchange, BigPharma Will Spend Up to $150 Million in Ads to Push ObamaCare | Main | Oh, Dearie: Now CBO Finds That Another of Obama's Phantasmal Cost-Cutting Initiatives -- This Time, Preventative Medicine and "Wellness" -- Will Also Save No Money, and In Fact Will Probably Cost More
August 10, 2009

CBO: Obama's Big Plan To Save Money By Increasing Preventative Care And Testing Will Actually Cost More Money

Dear Mr. Flag@whitehouse.gov.....You may want to have a chat with the gang over at CBO and the New England Journal of Medicine.

In yet more disappointing news for Democrats pushing for health care reform, Douglas W. Elmendorf, director of the Congressional Budget Office, offered a skeptical view Friday of the cost savings that could result from preventive care -- an area that President Obama and congressional Democrats repeatedly had emphasized as a way health care reform would be less expensive in the long term.

Obviously successful preventive care can make Americans healthier and save lives. But, Elmendorf wrote, it may not save money as Democrats had been arguing.

"Although different types of preventive care have different effects on spending, the evidence suggests that for most preventive services, expanded utilization leads to higher, not lower, medical spending overall," Elmendorf wrote. "That result may seem counterintuitive.

As the story goes on to point out (there's lots of good stuff there), only a fraction of people will contract a given disease. By testing a lot more people who were never going to get it, you are creating a lot more costs and you will still have to cost of treating those who were going to get it anyway.

Also, and I'm guessing a bit here, if you find certain things early you will run up a lot more cost in treatment, you will just start earlier but the result will often be the same (everyone is going to die at some point).

Yes, some people will be saved or lead improved lives because of early detection and that's a good thing. That's just not a cost savings argument which is the case Obama and the Democrats are making for all this new testing they want to do.

Eventually the money to pay for all of this will have to come from somewhere or costs will have to be cut. And we're right back where we started from except...the government is in charge of that decision, not individuals.

It's almost as if, despite what Obama and the left want people to think, there are no free lunches. This is especially true with something as expensive and personally valuable as heath care.

Gabe had this in the headlines but I think it's worth noting. We're getting caught up and rightly so, in the fight, it's important to remember the reason we are fighting is that Obama's plan is crap. Very dangerous crap at that.


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posted by DrewM. at 02:35 PM

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