Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Wisconsin Health Plan--A Serious Question

While the 'Evaluation' paper from WPRI uses rhetorical flourishes to make its distaste for the Wisconsin Health Plan clear ("command-and-control" is just a little...unkind), it does raise a very serious difficulty.

WHP, a proposal from Richards (D) and Gielow (R), will be funded by a 12% tax on employers and a 2% tax on employees, and will raise $12 billion/year for health-care expenses in Wisconsin.

However, WPRI analysis (admittedly not by actuaries) shows that the actual cost is likely to be between $16 Bn. and $20 Bn.


Already somewhere between 33% and 66% short of required funding?

That would raise the tax to 18% on employers and 3% on individuals...for a plan which has a $2K out-of-pocket (less $500.00 HSA) stop-loss for individuals? Really!

Not a good start, folks. That sort of estimate-deficiency raises credibility problems.

(The report makes another point--that medical talent is a "limited commodity"--not helped by the fact that medical school seats are NOT keeping up with population increases in the USA.)

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