About the Author

James C. Capretta

James C. Capretta

New Atlantis Contributing Editor James C. Capretta is an expert on health care and entitlement policy, with years of experience in both the executive and legislative branches of government. E-mail: jcapretta@aei.org.


James C. Capretta’s Latest New Atlantis Articles

 Health Care with a Conscience” (Fall 2008) 

 Health Care 2008: A Political Primer” (Spring 2008) 

 The Clipboard of the Future” (Winter 2008)


 More on James C. Capretta

Text Patterns - by Alan JacobsFuturisms - Critiquing the project to reengineer humanity

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The Public Plan Option 

The so-called “public plan option” has emerged as one of the most controversial elements of the emerging health-care reform effort in Congress. Critics have argued that it would pave the way for a full government takeover of American health care.

They’re right, as rigorous analysis from The Lewin Group, a health policy consulting firm, shows. Lewin analysts have modeled what a new, price-controlled, government-run option would do to insurance enrollment in the United States. Their conclusions are alarming. If the new plan paid the same fees as Medicare, private, job-based insurance would effectively cease to exist, and some 118.5 million Americans who were previously in private plans would end up in government-run insurance. It would only be a matter of time before American health insurance resembled the single-payer models of the United Kingdom and others.

Lewin’s analysis is summarized in a series of extremely useful PowerPoint slides (available here in PDF format), which were the basis for a presentation to the Republican staff of the Senate Finance Committee last December.

posted by James C. Capretta | 2:43 pm
File As: Health Care