Study: Obamacare Costs More Money Than It Saves

Monday, 24 Mar 2014 07:31 PM

By Ronald Kessler

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A new study about Obamacare proves the program is simply too expensive for its own good, says the American Action Forum.

The group's findings say the Affordable Care Act so far has racked up more than $27.2 billion in private-sector charges and $8 billion in costs to states.

The AAF estimates the law has brought in $2.6 billion in annualized benefits against $6.8 billion in costs, which means one thing: Obamacare is costing more money than it is saving.

The findings are similar when it comes to the labor and manpower it takes to keep Obamacare running. The law has amassed 159 million hours of paperwork, the AAF report says.

"To put the ACA’s paperwork burdens in perspective, it would take 79,518 employees (more than the population of Napa, California) working 2,000 hours annually to complete the ACA’s paperwork mandates," the AAF report reads. "These burdens obviously cost states and private entities time and money, which could otherwise be devoted to productivity, not regulatory compliance."

The report says the added paperwork and the time it takes to process it all are being felt by both the Department of Health and Human Services and the Treasury Department.

Small businesses are hit particularly hard with costs, the AAF says. The impact on this sector of the market is $1.9 billion in costs and 11.3 million hours of paperwork, the costs of which will be offset via a tax of between 3 percent and 5 percent, it says.

That's in addition to several other taxes written into the healthcare law.

"Last year, AAF predicted: 'If past is prologue, the 2014 report on ACA burdens will catalogue higher costs, more paperwork, and additional layers of red tape on the U.S. healthcare system,'" the AAF report reads. "The results are in: $4.5 billion in higher costs and 48 million more paperwork hours. Without significant reforms, expect similar results in 2015."

All of the added costs will lead to lighter wallets across the country as citizens are forced to pay higher premiums moving forward.

"Everyone knows that the way the exchange has rolled out . . . is going to lead to higher costs," a senior insurance executive who requested anonymity told The Hill.

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