A new study examining a major comprehensive health care reformproposal looks at the cost to employers and any burdens that mightbe placed directly on Americans with employer-sponsored healthplans. The Lewin Group's analysis of America's Affordable HealthChoices Act of 2009, as amended by the Energy and CommerceCommittee, is the first critical analysis of health care reformcosts that would extend beyond 2019.

The study shows President Obama's promise that reformlegislation will pay for itself during the next 10 years isachievable. As for his pledge that it will not add to the federaldeficit, the figures are not in his favor.

During the first 10 years, from 2010 to 2019, under the bill'simplementation, the cost (net federal cost) is estimated at $39billion and would be "nearly fully funded." But beyond that, in itssecond decade, the proposal would add an estimated $1 trillion tothe federal deficit. This is due to rapid growth in health carecosts that will outpace the growth in incomes and revenues over thelonger term, according to the study.

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