Thursday, July 16, 2009

CBO Preliminary Score of House Bill

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has released its preliminary 'score' of the House tri-committee bill announced on Monday. CBO is non-partisan research arm of the Congress that assesses the impact of legislation on the federal budget. All administrations, Democratic and Republican, eventually get irritated with the CBO for not forecasting changes in the way they see the world.

Bottom line is ~$1.04 Trillion in new spending from 2010-19 and that it would get to 97% insurance coverage by 2019. Note that they (CBO) is still assessing the offsets (Medicare cuts, income tax surtax, etc.) and will eventually judge whether the provisions of the bill pay for this increase. The President and Congressional Democrats have stated that they will identify budget reductions to offset increase, holding to a concept known as 'paygo.' $1 Trillion is a lot of money, but keep in mind this YEAR the U.S. will spend ~$2.2 Trillion on health care. So, the annual cost of this bill is less than 5% of total annual health spending.

The CBO's blog is a good place to look for the latest.

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