Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Patients' Choice Act

In last Friday's News and Observer, I write about the Patients' Choice Act, co-sponsored by Senator Richard Burr (R-NC). I have some questions about the bill, but I also found some places for compromise. I was delayed in posting because I am in China, and had trouble getting to blogspot from internet connections I had. I now have a soluation. Here is the column. close.

Here is a link to the short summary, long summary, and text of bill. Also, I believe this is going to be scored by CBO in the near future which is important.

It has been scored privately and now updated. One thing about HSI's private scoring. I was hesitant to talk a lot about their scoring of Patients' Choice Act because of how different HSI's scoring of the Kennedy-Dodd bill was compared to CBOs scoring. If you recall in June when Kennedy-Dodd was scored by CBO, chaos broke out because they said it would only expand insurance by 16 Million or so...while the HSI model said they would expand it by 40 Million or so (with linked increases in costs). A big difference. Essentially, HSI model is showing more behavioral uptake on just about all of the bills than is CBO. But, CBO is the official umpire. So, we need to see CBO score of PCA to get a sense of the RELATIVE effect of PCA v. Kennedy-Dodd on insurance uptake and cost.

I am not saying HSI model is not good. Macro simulations are not my thing....but one of these scoring models is off. Note that there is no evidence that HSI would be cherry picking for the Dems, as the folks behind it write a lot about Health Savings Accounts and like them, a favored strategy of the Republicans. Here is HSI. Here is a link of peer reviewed papers by Steven Parente and others who are HSI.

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