Navigation Links
Emory Health Policy Expert Weighs in on Candidates' Health Care Plans

ATLANTA, Oct. 2 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The presidential candidates' health care plans share some important elements, but Sen. John McCain's proposed health care plan is likely to result in higher overall health care spending than Sen. Barack Obama's, says Kenneth E. Thorpe, PhD, Emory University health policy researcher.

Thorpe, professor of health policy and management at Emory's Rollins School of Public Health, is the author of two analyses that detail estimated savings from both the McCain and Obama proposed plans.

Under McCain's plan, 14 million adults would face either denials of coverage or pre-existing condition waivers in today's individual health insurance market. If all employers dropped coverage, over 65 million adults would face the same fate, Thorpe's analysis notes.

Several elements of both presidential candidates' health plans are similar: They both emphasize the need to more effectively manage care for chronically ill patients (whose illnesses account for about 75 percent of overall health care spending in the U.S.) and to reduce the rising prevalence of chronic illness through primary prevention initiatives aimed at cutting smoking and obesity rates. Both plans also emphasize the importance of health information technology.

The critical difference is that "Sen. McCain's health care plan would change where and how many Americans secure health insurance," says Thorpe. "It would also change how insurance is bought and paid for. These are significant changes from the current system."

The central tenet of McCain's health care plan is to withdraw the current tax exclusion of employer health insurance contributions and treat them as taxable income. In exchange, McCain would provide refundable tax credits of $2,500 for individuals and $5,000 for families to offset the cost of purchasing insurance in the non-group private market.

In addition, McCain proposes that higher-risk, chronically ill patients secure health coverage through state high-risk pools. The plan is not specific on the mechanism for assuring Guaranteed Access Plan (GAP) coverage, and does not address how generous subsidies would need to be. But even if the overall cost of insurance for high-risk populations were capped at 50 percent higher than the current total cost of employer-sponsored insurance, the federal costs of this portion of McCain's health plan would approach $70 billion per year.

In contrast, Obama's health care proposal could reduce national health care spending by $200 billion to $275 billion and federal spending by approximately $100 billion by the year 2012.

Obama's health care plan, says Thorpe, includes a number of components designed to improve the quality of care and make health care more affordable over time. Key initiatives in the Obama plan include broad-scale adoption of health information technology, along with changes in financial incentives for physicians to promote evidence-based, best practice coordinated care management programs. In addition, Obama's plan encourages wider use of lifestyle change and wellness programs designed to reduce obesity and its associated costly conditions, such as diabetes, heart disease and stroke.

Thorpe is the former Deputy Assistant Secretary for Health Policy in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under President Clinton. He regularly testifies before the U.S. House and Senate on issues of health care financing, insurance and health care reform, advises state governments on health reform efforts, and is a frequent commentator for print and broadcast media.

Dr. Thorpe's analyses of Sens. McCain and Obama's health care proposals are available at:

SOURCE Emory University
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Caribou Coffee Honors Memory of One of Its Own With Amys Blend
2. Hub of fear memory formation identified in brain cells
3. Whole brain radiation increases risk of learning and memory problems in cancer patients
4. New Brain Fitness Program to Fight Memory Loss
5. Exercise May Help Prevent Age-Related Memory Loss
6. Australian over-50s walk away memory problems in world-first trial
7. Excercise May Help Prevent Age-Related Memory Loss
8. Age-related memory loss tied to slip in filtering information quickly
9. Pioneering Neurosciences Institute Sets Date for Dedication of New Facility and First-Ever International Forum on Memory and Memory Disorders
10. Cocaine addiction linked to voluntary drug use and cellular memory, UCSF study shows
11. Aging Hinders Memory Storage During Sleep
Post Your Comments:
(Date:10/13/2017)... , ... October 13, 2017 , ... While it’s often ... a problem. Fortunately, an inventor from Austin, Texas, has identified a solution. , She ... in darkness or restricted lighting. As such, it eliminates the need to turn on ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... The ... to promote standards of excellence for the field of eating disorders, announces the ... – 25, 2018 in Orlando, Florida at the Omni Resort at ChampionsGate. ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... ... Hannah Randall, PharmD ‘17, and Jennifer Huggins, PharmD ’17, along with clinical ... the primary prevention of cardiovascular diseases during the 15th Annual Women’s Health ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... , ... Apple Rehab Shelton Lakes , which specializes in the delivery ... as part of a disaster drill on October 3rd. , Apple Rehab participated with ... Manager, as well as the Connecticut Long Term Care Mutual Aid Plan (LTC-MAP). ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... 2017 , ... The Visiting Nurse Association (VNA) of Somerset Hills is proud ... and unique items from across the nation, this holiday-themed event will raise funds and ... the VNA. The boutique will be open Saturday, November 4 (10:00 a.m. – ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:10/2/2017)... The Rebound mobile app is poised to become a vital ... prescription drug addiction. The app empowers users to develop an ... their dosage in a safe, controlled manner while maximizing well-being. ... 100,000 people to sign up will enjoy 3 months of ... ...
(Date:9/28/2017)... 2017 Cohen Veterans Bioscience and Early Signal ... wearable and home sensors for real-time monitoring of patients ... a nonprofit organization focused on disruptive health solutions for ... analytical system to record and integrate behavioral, cognitive, physiological ... ...
(Date:9/27/2017)... Israel and NEW YORK , Sept. 27, ... with mobile health and big data solutions, today announced that its MyDario ... Please check your local TV listings for when The Dr. Oz Show ... ... season this month. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: