RomneyCare 2.0 costs escalate, MA moves to dictate medical care
Following Ayn Rand's novel Atlas Shrugged as a script, the Massachusetts legislature has just imposed "wider powers" freezing and controlling medical practice to solve failures of Romney Care, which are claimed to be the fault of medical providers.
Costs of Romney Care in Massachusetts are exploding, with 79% of newly "insured" participants about to consume 54% of the state budget through Medicaid, subsidies, and government employee pay under the state medical mandates.
Under powers just granted to a newly established state board to hold down exploding costs under the mandated medical care expenditures, providers will not be permitted to charge for the mandated expansion.
All doctors, hospitals and other providers must register with the new state board as a condition to continue practicing medicine. They are required to report financial performance, trends in prices and costs, state quality measures, market share and more.
No "material change" in operations will be permitted without the board's approval. The board is empowered to rewrite contracts, payment levels and methods "deemed to be excessive". The board can at its discretion supervise any provider claimed to be acting contrary to criteria to be decided later. Those targeted must submit a "performance improvement plan" that the board must approve to continue operating.
The left is already clamoring for additional 'wider powers' as it complains that fines of $500,000 for disobedience are too small. When none of this works to solve the Romney-care induced problems and instead makes them worse, there will be Romney Care 3.0.
WSJ article: August 5, 2012:
"RomneyCare 2.0: With costs rising fast, Massachusetts moves to dictate medical care."
"Massachusetts spends more per capita on health care than any other state and therefore more than anywhere else in the industrialized world. Costs are 27% higher than the U.S. average,...""
"Under the plan, all ... doctors, hospitals and other providers must register with a new state bureaucracy as a condition of licensure..."
"... the commission is empowered to control the practice and organization of medicine. The Massachusetts left complains that this government control is too weak ..."
It is called Romney Care 2.0, but Romney of course did not plan or expect his plan to become this and had nothing to do with the new powers imposed by the legislature.
And that is the problem: he didn't anticipate the monster he created.
Why he thinks he can rationalize this by his "principle" that it is wrong for the Federal government but ok for state governments to do this to medical care providers and consumers will boggle minds for a very long time. It seems that Romney, like his VP candidate Paul Ryan, also likes Atlas Shrugged. But he wound up on the wrong side of it when he tried a statist "fix" in the name of "personal responsibility" and his evasive contradictions bit him hard.