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Presidential Issues: Budget


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Sanders’s Health-Care Plan Is Missing Its Price Tag

January 21, 2016

By Megan McArdle

So Bernie Sanders has a health-care plan. It sounds wonderful. It covers everything, from dental to long-term care. There will be no co-pays or deductibles. You will not have to hassle with an insurer over what’s covered. There’s just one small problem, which is how Sanders is planning to pay for this.

Yes, his health care plan lays out revenue estimates in great detail. But the revenue estimates and the cost estimates are perhaps just a trifle too rosy for me to take seriously.

To see what I mean, consider the National Health Expenditure data. It says we spent about $3 trillion on health care in 2014 from all sources -- government insurance, private insurance, out of pocket. Now the government already spends $1.3 trillion, or thereabouts, so we can’t fairly count that against Sanders’s health care plan. However, that leaves us with about $1.7 trillion to go. Yet Sanders claims that his plan, despite providing vastly more generous health benefits than basically any plan in existence, will cost only $1.35 trillion a year. That’s a pretty big gap. How does he get there?

Read the full article at Bloomberg View: Sanders's Health-Care Plan Is Missing Its Price Tag

Issue Categories : Bernie Sanders, Budget, Health Care, Taxes