KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Fact Checking DeMint On Medicare/Obamacare Comparison And President On Premium Cost

The Washington Post's Fact Checker examined several claims about Obamacare.

The Washington Post: Jim DeMint's Claims About Medicare Cost Estimates From 1965
In making the case that the cost of the health-care law was sure to grow, [Jim DeMint, president of the Heritage Foundation] cited some figures about Medicare that struck us as a bit fishy. ... There's no question that any new social program often has unintended costs. ... DeMint's figures are ridiculously overstated. He preferred to use trumped-up stats rather than refer to the concrete examples (Kessler, 10/22).

The Washington Post: President Obama's Claim That 6 Of 10 Uninsured Will Pay Less Than $100 A Month In Premiums
Whether health insurance premiums go up or go down is a central part of the debate over the Affordable Care Act, a.k.a. Obamacare. The research and policy arm of the Department of Health and Human Services released a report last month asserting premiums before tax credits were 16 percent lower than projected — a claim immediately challenged by skeptics of the law as a "load of spin." So what about the study referenced by the president? The study, titled "Fifty-Six Percent of the Uninsured could pay $100 or less per month for Coverage in 2014," turns out to also be an in-house study produced by HHS — a fact that the president failed to mention. Moreover, it really is not based on an examination of premiums at all, but household composition and income data (Kessler, 10/22).

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