Health costs to double under Romney plan?

Families USA argues Americans would suffer, and pay more, without health reform. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci) Families USA argues Americans would suffer, and pay more, without health reform. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)

Families buying non-group health insurance on their own in 2016 would pay nearly twice as much under the health proposals offered by presidential candidate Mitt Romney than under President Obama’s health reform law, a new report from Families USA claims.

Families USA is a prominent Washington, D.C.-based consumer advocacy group that supports health care reform.

Under Romney’s plan, families on average would pay $11,481 compared to $5,985 under Obama—a differential that includes comparative insurance premium payments as well as out-of-pocket costs paid by families when they receive health care, the report says.

The report uses national and state-by-state data to analyze and compare health care benefits and costs among three different plans: “RomneyCare” (the Massachusetts health law signed by then-Governor Mitt Romney in 2006), “ObamaCare” (the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, signed into law in March 2010), and “RomneyCandidateCare,” the health care proposals of presidential candidate Romney.

While there are “significant” similarities between ObamaCare and RomneyCare, the substantial difference lies between Romney’s new health care proposals.

ObamaCare and the Massachusetts-based RomneyCare, on the one hand, and RomneyCandidateCare, on the other hand, are as different as day and night,” says Ron Pollack, executive director of Families USA.

Romney and running mate Paul Ryan have made the repeal and replacement of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act a top campaign goal.

Nationally, almost 42 million more Americans would lack health insurance without health reform, the report says, and those buying private insurance would pay almost twice as much under Romney than under Obama.

The group’s report also concluded that “RomneyCandidateCare” would “significantly” change Medicare by repealing benefits created by the PPACA.

Three health analysts who served as advisers on both the PPACA and Massachusetts health reform helped prepare the report.

The group’s report earned early backlash. The Romney camp called it “absurd,” while’s Avik Roy called the comparison “fatally flawed,” arguing the report makes inaccurate assumptions about Romney’s plan and doesn’t account for the PPACA’s tax hikes and Medicare cuts.

The Romney campaign said the report “assumes a fantasy world where Obamacare has actually worked. But Americans aren’t buying it. They’ve watched as provision after provision has failed, costs have skyrocketed, and Medicare has been cut by $716 billion. [The] report undermines the important health care debate our country should be having.”


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