Unhappy birthday, Obamacare

Unhappy birthday, Obamacare

Obamacare turns five years old today. But there’s little to celebrate.

When he signed his signature piece of legislation into law, President Obama guaranteed lower health-care costs, universal coverage and higher-quality care. Americans wouldn’t have to change their doctors if they didn’t want to. Five years later, the health law has failed to fulfill those grandiose promises.

“In the Obama administration,” candidate Obama boasted in 2008, “we’ll lower premiums by up to $2,500 for a typical family in a year.”

Not quite. A recent report from the National Bureau of Economic Research examined the non-group marketplace, where families and individuals who don’t get coverage through work shop for insurance. The report concluded that 2014 premiums were 24.4% higher than they would have been without Obamacare.

On Obamacare’s third birthday, the White House reassured Americans the law would protect vulnerable patient populations from increases in drug prices.

“Preventing them from being charged more because of a pre-existing condition or getting fewer benefits like mental health services or prescription drugs,” was a key purpose of the law, explained the White House.

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