Here is some more fodder on mandates — from 2002. It’s only gotten worse in 6 years, by the way.
Some choice bits your progressive friends won’t like:
A study prepared by the actuarial firm Milliman and Robertson for the National Center for Policy Analysis assessed the costs of the 12 most common state-imposed mandates. The analysis found that these mandates could increase the cost of family health insurance by as much as 30 percent. The firm’s analysts also found that certain individual mandates, such as well child care, involve relatively small increased cost, adding as little as $35 a year to the price of a basic family health insurance policy. [Emphasis mine.]
30% for just 12 mandates!? I’m waiting for the response that actuaries Milliman and Robertson are in the pay of big oil.
A report by professors Frank A. Sloan and Christopher J. Conover of Duke University found that, "…the higher the number of coverage requirements placed on plans, the higher the probability that an individual was uninsured, and the lower the probability of people having any private coverage, including group coverage. The probability that an adult was uninsured rose significantly with each mandate present." The study found that 20 to 25 percent of the number of uninsured was due to the presence of state mandates.
Oh, those right-wing insurance lobbyists at Duke.
In a comprehensive review of state regulation of health insurance conducted for the U.S. Congress, the General Accounting Office (GAO) found that insurance costs are consistently higher in states that impose a large number of mandates on insurers. The report noted that while consumers receive some targeted advantages, findings show there is no question that state insurance regulations "add costs to insured health plans."
Citing recent studies, GAO researchers found that while mandates invariably boost the overall cost of insurance claims, the amount of increase differs among states. In Maryland, for example, mandated benefits accounted for 22 percent of claims costs, while in Virginia they represented 12 percent of costs and in Iowa 5 percent. The GAO concluded that, "In general, such cost estimates are higher in states with more mandated benefits and in states that mandate more costly benefits."
It seems that at least the GAO report focuses on cost of claims, not insurance premiums. Interesting. I’ll wait for our "progressive" friends to explain that one away. And, by the way, I explained this phenomenon in past arguments, but the progressives couldn’t grasp it. Seems – yet again – their linear thinking is an impediment to understand healthcare holistically.
Oh, and even the left-wing Urban Institute expressed concern over mandates:
The Urban Institute also pointed to the link between state-imposed mandates and a rising uninsured population… "While most firms may not drop coverage because such a mandate is enacted, the mandate may contribute to higher premiums over time, and these higher premiums lead some people to drop their employer-sponsored or individual coverage."
(Big HT: Brian Balfour)