Insurance report undercuts health care claims

A report commissioned by America’s Health Insurance Plans says the Senate Finance Committee legislation will cause health care costs to go up faster than under the current system.

The report, which was conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers, has caused some buzz among Hill GOP aides and infuriated the Obama White House.

The report will drop ahead of a crucial vote on the bill Tuesday in the Finance Committee, and could figure into the discussion there. At the very least, expect to hear a lot more about the report from Republicans, who are looking to slow any kind of momentum for the Democratic health care reform proposals after the Congressional Budget Office’s positive analysis last week.

The CBO concluded the Finance Committee bill would reduce the deficit by $81 billion in 2019, allaying the concerns of centrist senators for whom cost is a chief issue.

The report comes from AHIP, which has spoken publicly in favor of overhauling the health care system, but has worked behind-the-scenes to kill aspects of the president’s plan, including attempts to create a government competitor to private plans, Insurance companies have also balked at the watered-down individual mandate in the Finance bill.

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