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Hospital hallway with doctors and nurses.
Here's another nail in the coffin of the case for repealing Obamacare. Two of the major players in the healthcare industry—hospitals and insurance companies—are getting a much bigger stake in the law as they foresee profits under it.
HCA Holdings Inc. (HCA), the largest for-profit hospital chain, yesterday raised its forecast and reported a 6.6 percent drop in uninsured patients at its 165 hospitals, a reduction that grows to 48 percent in four states that expanded Medicaid, a top initiative of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. WellPoint Inc. (WLP), which made the biggest commitment of any publicly traded insurer to the Obamacare markets, raised its guidance today after handily beating analyst estimates for the quarter on rising membership linked to the overhaul. […]

“Obamacare’s turned out to be quite good for health-care companies,” said Les Funtleyder, a portfolio manager at Esquared asset management, in a telephone interview.

LifePoint Hospitals Inc. (LPNT), another for-profit chain, also raised its forecast yesterday while the largest insurer, UnitedHealth Group Inc. (UNH), said earlier this month it added 635,000 people to its Medicaid plans and was expanding into two dozen Obamacare exchanges in 2015, from five this year.

More insured people means more policies sold and more payments to hospitals for treatments, which is only good news for hospitals. It also means insurance companies aren't experiencing any "death spiral" from having to provide coverage to sick people—there are enough healthy ones signed up to keep them in the black. It also means that the taxpayers are getting a break because Medicare's costs are shrinking.

What this all adds up to is that the number of allies Republicans have in repeal has shrunk to two judges on the D.C. Circuit and the diminishing tea party base.

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 08:47 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (33+ / 0-)

    "The NSA’s capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left, such is the capability to monitor everything. [...] There would be no place to hide."--Frank Church

    by Joan McCarter on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 08:47:13 AM PDT

  •  with more insured (5+ / 0-)

    I wonder how many more doctor visits have occurred.
    An ounce of prevention kinda thing.

  •  What a shocker (17+ / 0-)

    Insurance companies are turning a sweet profit with the law they helped write.

    “In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded.” Terry Pratchett

    by 420 forever on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 09:00:14 AM PDT

    •  And we celebrate this...with thunderous applause.. (10+ / 0-)

      It's great that we have more people with access to health care, but did we HAVE to line the pockets of the greedy to make it happen?

      No, no...please don't remind me...it's "all we could get" at the time...

      Adequate health care should be a LEGAL RIGHT in the U.S without begging or bankruptcy. Until it is, we should not dare call our society civilized.

      by Love Me Slender on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 09:04:06 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Currency is a worthless token. It tells us (11+ / 0-)

        how much of something is being used--its relative value, but not its absolute value.
        The absolute value we are concerned about is the population's health. More people going to see more doctors to improve/insure their health may well cost more than a few people getting lots of terminal care, but the former is obviously more valuable, regardless of the cost.

        We need to distinguish between the measurement and the thing measured.

      •  Unfortunately. . . (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        bear83, goldenboy, smartdemmg

        it isn't true that "the number of allies Republicans have in repeal has shrunk to two judges on the D.C. Circuit and the diminishing tea party base."

        According to the same Bloomberg article linked here, "Americans' opinions on the measure may be too hardened for Democrats to see much political benefit this year, or to fight off changes to the act in the future, said Robert Blendon, a professor of health policy at the Harvard School of Public Health. Recent polls indicate that more Americans remain opposed to the health-care law than support it, although that includes people who think it isn't liberal enough. "

        Because Democrats have been too chickenshit to proclaim the law's success and stand up for it, and because the corporate media is a tool, the successes of the ACA have not registered with the public.

        •  It's been my experience that conservatives, (4+ / 0-)

          when proven wrong, which is often, just become more stubborn, and facts cannot change their minds. The Iraq war is a perfect example.

          One can always tell when a Republican is taking Viagra because he gets taller.

          by shoeless on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 11:01:04 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  While this may be true for some, I can tell you (4+ / 0-)

          that at least in my red state, there is already a backlash against the GOP lead state government by their own base in rural areas where their only hospital is being shuttered because Medicaid was not expanded. So those Conservative constituencies are now having to drive farther and farther for their care and even Republican officials in those areas are speaking out against their state government. Conservative politicians tried to convince these people that Obamacare was responsible for their hospital closing, but the healthcare workers and their own Republican mayor have made it very plain that it was the Governor and state house who are responsible. The thing with rural peope who finally realize they have been duped is that they can hold a grudge for a long time. So I suspect the GOP will eventually pay dearly---and for a long long time.

          For Christina's America

          by DWKING on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 11:17:28 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Kudos to your fellow residents (0+ / 0-)

            for being smart enough to not just blindly swallow the "It was Obamacare!" line and actually call out the people who are really responsible for their problems. I wish more states were so well-informed.

      •  Yep ... (4+ / 0-)
        No, no...please don't remind me...it's "all we could get" at the time...
        we don't want to ruin the good (profits) with the perfect (policy).

        The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand Russell

        by accumbens on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 11:00:43 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Yes we celebrate those getting access to (4+ / 0-)

        healthcare with tremendous applause!!! If you have had a life threatening disease that can finally be adequately addressed through this legislation you CELEBRATE this actuality with thunderous applause!

        Try to understand this, people who can finally receive care do not care that insurance companies are making money! People who are sick are concerned about one thing and it is: Can I get care?!

        What is it? The century long wait for healthcare was not a long enough wait for people who have died without having healthcare? Well, the tens of millions of individuals who now benefit from this law disagrees with you!

        •  Exactly. Cutting off ones nose to spite (4+ / 0-)

          healthcare execs in this case leads to an early grave for many people.

          It's the Central Limit Theorem, Stupid!

          by smartdemmg on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 11:33:06 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  You arrogantly write as though I have seen... (0+ / 0-)

          ...no positive benefit as a result of this law...or as though I do not have a life-threatening health condition.

          For the record, your comment in no way rebukes any part of mine. Every rational person agrees that a public insurance option would have been FAR superior to one that runs through for-profit scumbags.

          Adequate health care should be a LEGAL RIGHT in the U.S without begging or bankruptcy. Until it is, we should not dare call our society civilized.

          by Love Me Slender on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 03:29:02 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  And you arrogantly attempt to rebuke those who (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            smartdemmg, RightHeaded

            celebrate the ACA as a life saving event. Yes, people will celebrate the ACA despite the fact that insurance companies will make a profit. As I said before, we don't care!

            And we don't care about your condescending remark about individuals celebrating the ACA. I just find it offensive. You do not walk in the shoes of the tens of millions of people who are relieved to finally get access to care. You could assert that you understand these people but yet your comment attempt to rebuke many individuals who celebrate the passing of this law.

            I have nothing more to add.

            •  Again, your fucking arrogant presumption... (0+ / 0-)

              ...that I "do not walk in the shoes of the tens of millions of people who are relieved to finally get access to care." is so unbecoming.

              How exactly do you know this, Ned? You fucking don't. You just get your feathers ruffled any time anyone DARES to criticize Obama's signature legislation.

              This isn't the forum to spare your feelings, Ned. I would think you'd know that for as long as you have been here.

              Adequate health care should be a LEGAL RIGHT in the U.S without begging or bankruptcy. Until it is, we should not dare call our society civilized.

              by Love Me Slender on Fri Aug 01, 2014 at 03:25:52 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  InsuranceCo profits will be the undoing of ACA (3+ / 0-)

        Eventually, the costs will become unsustainable for patients and the federal government.  ACA is good, but in most ways it still postpones the inevitable - single payer.

        Health care costs can only decline so much under a system that yields big profits for the private insurance, health care, pharma and medical equipment industries.

        My guess is we'll see a reversal of ACA's cost cutting benefits in about 5-7 years, depending on when (or if) the employer mandate is enacted.

        Money is property, not speech. Overturn Citizens United.

        by Betty Pinson on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 11:21:17 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Next you'll be saying that young people will not (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          CWinebrinner, hang319

          signup. Or perhaps a majority will not pay for care. You are predicting that Obamacare will fail in 5-7 years, or as you put it:

          the costs will become unsustainable for patients and the federal government.  
          And I am predicting that the legislation will be improved as the years go on, especially after more and more people climb on board, and legislatures view it as in their best interest to maintain a workable standard within the healthcare industry to benefit their constituents. Yes, single payer would also be an improvement if we can get there.

          I have heard individuals predict the failure of the ACA since the very first day it was signed into law, some even argued we kill it, because it wasn't good enough. Funny how many of those individuals are now being extremely quiet.

          •  Whe the federal subsidies are struck down for good (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Betty Pinson

            ...the law will collapse...bank it.

            Will you still be defending the decision to run this reform through the for-profit insurance industry when (not if, when) that happens?

            Adequate health care should be a LEGAL RIGHT in the U.S without begging or bankruptcy. Until it is, we should not dare call our society civilized.

            by Love Me Slender on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 03:30:30 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  And when will the federal subsidies be struck down (0+ / 0-)

              again? You have an idea on that?

              •  Yep...I have written on it many times... (0+ / 0-)

                Once the 7th circuit (heavily R justices) gets their Halbig-esque case, it won't matter what the D.C court or the 4th circuit decides. It's going to SCOTUS because of the conflicting appeals court rulings...and SCOTUS will toss the federal subsidies because the stupid language about subsidies doesn't permit them. You can try to divine intent all you want, but the black and white words spell it out: subsides for state-exchange policies...and SCOTUS will tell our side to go back to congress and re-write the language if we want subsidies for people getting policies in federal exchanges...which we all know will never, EVER happen.

                Any other education you need? I'm here to help.

                Adequate health care should be a LEGAL RIGHT in the U.S without begging or bankruptcy. Until it is, we should not dare call our society civilized.

                by Love Me Slender on Fri Aug 01, 2014 at 03:29:55 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

          •  Young people will continue to buy in (0+ / 0-)

            to ACA for now, those that can afford it. The problem is that ACA is affordable only to those with middle class wages, the rest go onto Medicaid or remain uninsured.

            As our economy continues to struggle and the middle class shrinks, we may see a decline in ACA enrollment, especially as young people age, start families and do other things that raise the cost of their coverage.

            Most will drift back to Medicaid coverage, if its available, or become uninsured.  But young people earning $10 to $15 an hour will struggle to buy ACA coverage.

            Money is property, not speech. Overturn Citizens United.

            by Betty Pinson on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 05:22:11 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  The ACA fucking sucks compared to what... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Betty Pinson

          ...SHOULD have been passed and signed. Sorry, but it's true.

          Adequate health care should be a LEGAL RIGHT in the U.S without begging or bankruptcy. Until it is, we should not dare call our society civilized.

          by Love Me Slender on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 03:31:30 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  The positive part, though (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Love Me Slender

            is that the health care system in the US cannot survive with large numbers of uninsured Americans, period.  We stretched it as long as we could, but the whole system was very close to going broke before ACA was passed.

            If ACA can't be sustained, if large numbers of people start falling out of the system because they can't afford it, we'll be forced to come up with single payer or some other method of providing affordable health care for all.  There's no other option any longer.

            Money is property, not speech. Overturn Citizens United.

            by Betty Pinson on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 05:27:14 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  You forgot the gunZ at the town meetings. They (0+ / 0-)

        were so unruly it was not safe to take a group of kids to witness the workings of government.

        Use REDUNDANT safety when hauling precious cargo-- Use open source E-Z Baby Saver -- Andrew Pelham, 11yo inventor E-Z Baby Saver

        by 88kathy on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 01:15:16 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  It's worth mentioning that while the insurance (7+ / 0-)

    companies line up their pockets, millions are still uninsured. So this is hardly a reason to rejoice.

    “In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded.” Terry Pratchett

    by 420 forever on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 09:09:53 AM PDT

    •  Except for the millions who are now covered. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      CWinebrinner, hang319

      I get your point but let's not forget about those people who are now insured and receiving treatment. They matter.

      Every change in this country that has ever occurred historically has left some people out but that doesn't mean those laws were not worth fighting for, they just paved the way for the next step forward.

      It's the Central Limit Theorem, Stupid!

      by smartdemmg on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 11:36:04 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  MORE SUBTLY (15+ / 0-)

    The profit caps imposed by ACA are not causing the insurance industry to implode.  This invalidates a whole set of predictions that have been made. If this goes on for several more years consistently (growth and profit), then you have evidence on the books that the profit caps could even be adjusted lower, if the voters demanded it.

    •  You're ignorant to put it mildly…or should I (0+ / 0-)

      say, just uneducated?

      The profit caps imposed by ACA
      There are no profit caps in existence for the ACA.

      Have you read it?

      •  Um...actually, there are. (10+ / 0-)

        The Medical Loss Ratio requires insurance companies to spend a minimum of either 80% or 85% of the premiums paid on actual, real-world medical treatment, as opposed to corporate profits, CEO bonuses and the like. Any excessive profit margin has to be refunded to their customers.

        http://www.cms.gov/...

        Thus, their gross profit is limited to no more than 15-20% at most, which is still reasonably generous.

        There are likely various loopholes and the like, but I'm pretty sure that's what Bendix is referring to.

        •  And they are already finding ways to circumvent (4+ / 0-)

          the medical loss ratio from what I understand.  For example, marketing is now patient education.  And never forget that the insurers primary expertise is in getting around the rules and regulations. And they will with the ACA as well.

          The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand Russell

          by accumbens on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 11:03:29 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  That's not a cap at all. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          dinotrac

          there is no limit on premiums charged. The ACA allows the Insurance thieves to raise premiums 10% per annum without any explanation.

          Over 105 and you get a letter.

          Let's use your 15% profit sceanrio.

          Which is greater for a health insurance corporation:
          15% of $10B or 15% of $20B?

          This is basic math. Your answer does not address premium increases at all.

          i fear supporters of the ACA did poorly in both reading comprehension as well as math.

          result?

          Democrats overwhelming supported the complete(and now mandatory) takeover of the health care sector of  this country by the FOR PROFIT HEATH INSURANCE CORPORATE MAFIA.

        •  That is not a cap on profits. It's a form of (0+ / 0-)

          cost-plus regulation. As costs rise, so do profits.

          LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

          by dinotrac on Fri Aug 01, 2014 at 06:40:47 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  My, very impolite response to a technical (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        88kathy

        misunderstanding.

        It's true of course, that there are no profit caps.
        It's also true that the premium/payout ratios are an incentive to increase costs.

        But better to educate than to be so smug and nasty.  You never know when  your petard will blow.

        LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

        by dinotrac on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 10:53:37 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  really? (0+ / 0-)

          impolite? technical misunderstanding?

          dkos is still filled with diaries proclaiming the victory of the ACA.

          -----

          Impolite is how the overwhelming dkos majority treated those that tried to explain the coming rip off.

          ...basically shouting down any and all who tried to warn against the corporate takeover.

      •  Yes, there are (0+ / 0-)

        It's called the medical loss ratio.  It should have been capped much higher than the current level, but insurance company lobbyists prevailed.

        MLR should be around 90%, meaning 90% of every dollar insurance companies collect in premiums must be spent on actual health care services.

        Money is property, not speech. Overturn Citizens United.

        by Betty Pinson on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 11:23:59 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  There are no profit caps. This is a popular (3+ / 0-)

      misconception.

      What actually exist are minimum ratios of service payouts to premiums collected.  Two things to remember:

      1. An insurance company doesn't necessarily make its money on the difference between premiums and payouts.  That big pile of money is available for investment.

      2. The new ratios don't necessarily reduce the margins.  NPR did a study of major insurance companies and found that many of them already operated in the prescribed ranges.

      3.  The new requirements look very much like the cost-plus pricing that has been applied to regulated utilities for years.
      Know how you make more profits under cost-plus regulation?
      You increase your costs!

      LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

      by dinotrac on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 10:46:21 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Depends on your POV (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TheLizardKing, dinotrac

        Your first 2 points are a matter of perspective and definition of "profits".

        Your third point is a question of loopholes and enforcement. Supposedly it's up to the HHS Secretary to determine what's considered "real" medical care or not, but I don't know how fuzzy that is. Presumably a junket to Hawaii or advertising isn't considered "real" medical care, I would hope...

        •  No. Profits are profits. They are not a matter of (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Betty Pinson

          opinion.

          And -- number 3 is not a matter of loopholes and enforcement, although I agree that one could try to "invent" some health care costs.  The other way is simply not to be very diligent in trying to control costs. Pay the providers whatever they ask (well, maybe not exactly that). Approve things you might not otherwise approve, etc.  First year's a bitch, in all likelihood, but, overall, plenty of money to be made maintaining a steady margin on increasingly expensive goods.

          LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

          by dinotrac on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 10:59:57 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  "Costs" = medical services denied previously (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        dinotrac

        under pre-existing conditions and other claim-avoidance and claim-reduction strategies.

        I predicted a utility-equivalent industry developing where the insurance-utility makes more money the more it spends. Unlike electricity, gas, water, telephone, etc., the "infrastructure costs" are low - competition has low entry barriers. It worries me that many markets have too few competing insurers.

  •  i am baffled at (5+ / 0-)

    the attitude that "what we got is not better than what we had".  that is just not true.  the current situation is not perfect, but what we had was very bad.  just imho.

    "I am an old woman, named after my mother. my old man is another child who's grown old." John Prine (not an old woman)

    by art ah zen on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 10:04:27 AM PDT

    •  Anything would be better than what we had. (8+ / 0-)

      That doesn't mean the ACA is any good. It's much better than what we had, but it's as far from an adequate fix as it could possibly be.

      The ACA's main plan is working: lining up the pockets of the insurance industry.

      “In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded.” Terry Pratchett

      by 420 forever on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 10:14:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Oh my gosh! Do I have a split personality? (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        420 forever, commonmass, art ah zen

        Do I sleep type?

        I could not have said it any better myself.

        ACA IS a pile of crap.
        But...it's much better than what we had before.

        We have replaced intolerably horrible with merely horrible.
        That's a big and important move up.

        LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

        by dinotrac on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 10:48:07 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  One if the tells was that the Congresspeople pu... (4+ / 0-)

        One if the tells

        was that the Congresspeople pushing the PPACA made concessions to Republicans to solicit their votes, but when they didn't vote for it, the proponents kept the concessions in there anyway.

      •  My 30-year old son with a (0+ / 0-)

        brain tumor would beg to differ with you, I am certain, especially after having lost coverage between his 1st and 2nd surgeries.  The ACA may not be perfect, but it has saved at least one life.  I don't begrudge the lined pockets of the insurance industry that found a way to accommodate my son with access to care and life.  I think of the ACA as a step toward single payer, and an interim benefit is that my son gets to live.

    •  We just have to be realistic about limitations (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      art ah zen, semiMennonite

      and begin preparing to replace it with a better single payer system.

      ACA, as amended, passed and amended again,  won't work for  very long, it will need to be replaced fairly soon, within the next decade.

      The time is now to begin pushing for a model for Medicare for all.

      Money is property, not speech. Overturn Citizens United.

      by Betty Pinson on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 11:34:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  No shock there. It was never any secret that ACA (9+ / 0-)

    was set up to be welfare for the health care industry with a few important bones to the general populace.

    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

    by dinotrac on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 10:39:56 AM PDT

  •  Will GOP Attack Their State's Biggest Employers? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TofG, dinotrac

    Look at NC - Duke and Blue Cross (BCBS) are pretty much the states only health insurers.  Does the GOP attack them?  Is the GOP  "saving" people from the horrors of BCBS?  If BCBS is not good enough for the poor, why should it be good enough for anyone?

    Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

    by bernardpliers on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 10:40:21 AM PDT

    •  Two different things (0+ / 0-)

      Duke is a big-ass provider - hospitals, urgent cares, physician groups, etc. BCBS is the state's biggest insurer.

      For 2014 BCBS was the only company in the federal exchange in all 100 NC counties. Coventry was in about 40 counties. United Health Care is joining the exchange for 2015, and the increased competition will theoretically hold premium increases in check.

      The GOP does not seem to have a beef with private companies. Their slash and burn rhetoric is aimed at federal, state and local governments, Medicare, and the public schools.

      Election Day is Nov 4th, 2014 It's time for the Undo button on the 2010 Election.

      by bear83 on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 10:55:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Hard to believe Roberts or Kennnedy would give the (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dinotrac, Shaylors Provence

    finger to for profit health care by trying to gut the ACA in the latest court case. Could be why Roberts kept the majority of the ACA intact.

  •  Now doesn't that just warm your heart (7+ / 0-)
    Two of the major players in the healthcare industry—hospitals and insurance companies—are getting a much bigger stake in the law as they foresee profits under it.
    I'm telling you, I'm giddy with delight, dancing around my living room.  I haven't heard this much good news since.........well, let me think:  since the DoJ declared no right to not be an informant, for starters.

    Franz Kafka did not write fiction.

    If you don't have a seat at the table, you're probably on the menu.

    by CarolinNJ on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 10:50:28 AM PDT

  •  Providence Health Systems (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    commonmass, CWinebrinner

    These are the latest numbers and facts given to Providence Employees such as myself:

    Key Indicator Projected Annual Performance for 2014 Projected Annual Growth from 2013

    Physician office visits 7,062,998  Up 17 percent
    Outpatient emergency room visits 1,301,643  Up 2 percent
    Ambulatory visits 7,415,743  Up 15 percent
    Home care visits 663,667  Up 7 percent
    Births 50,254  Up 11 percent
    Ambulatory surgeries 179,445  Up 15 percent
    Hospital case mix index 1.5710  Up 3 percent (baseline of 1)
    Providence Health Plan enrollment 427,647  Up 7 percent
    Affiliation operating revenue growth $980,000,000 (annualized) 8 percent increase

    In addition, more than 4 million people in our five states are newly insured as a result of the Affordable Care Act. Today, 2.37 million more individuals have Medicaid coverage, and 1.68 million more have private insurance. The expanded coverage supports our ability to serve those most in need and improve the health of the communities we serve.

    A lot of Providence Health Systems Mgmt is Republican and it was all doom and gloom because of ACA....

    Now, not so much...I am guessing they will tell us tripling their own wages was worth it now.

    "We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them." -- Albert Einstein

    by lynn47 on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 10:50:36 AM PDT

  •  Or, for you Republicans out there.... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    commonmass, bear83, TofG, the oklahoma kid

    let me adjust the highlighting of a small part:

    It also means that the taxpayers are getting a break because Medicare's costs are shrinking.
  •  Yep. It's a boondoggle for insurance companies. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    The Dead Man, Mr Robert, 420 forever

    What would Bismarck say about that?

    "To take another person's life from the bench is no better than to take another person's life from the street"

    by commonmass on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 10:51:50 AM PDT

  •  Yep, like I and others here said: The ACA was the (6+ / 0-)

    biggest gift ever to private health insurers.  It locks the country into a private health insurance model for generations and, as the industry finds their usual, expert way to circumvent the rules and restrictions, will make even more, much of which is subsidized by our government and tax dollars.  Nice work if you can get it.

    The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand Russell

    by accumbens on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 10:58:55 AM PDT

    •  We won't be locked in private insurance for long. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      CWinebrinner

      Vermont goes to single payer in 2017. Just as Massahusetts paved the way for the ACA, Vermont will pave the way for single payer.

      One can always tell when a Republican is taking Viagra because he gets taller.

      by shoeless on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 11:06:56 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Wrong. (4+ / 0-)

        Vermont notwithstanding, the ACA moved the national Overton window on healthcare way to the right.   In 2008 a robust public option was seen by progressives as a acceptable fallback position from single-payer.   In 2014, Romneycare is considered a triumph of progressive policymaking.     We'd need a giant shift to the left just to get the Overton window back to where it was in 2008.   It ain't happening anytime soon, given that millions of liberals have become enthusiastic cheerleaders for a market-driven for-profit model of healthcare delivery.   We're looking at a minimum of 20 years before real healthcare reform gets revisited.  It may never happen

        •  Canada was also "locked" into private insurance. (0+ / 0-)

          Saskatchewan went to single payer and the rest of the country gradually followed. Overall, it took 15 years for every province to adopt single payer.

          The change in demographics in the US is happening quickly. Obviously, blue states will go to single payer much more quickly than red states, but I certainly don't see that the ACA has slowed the process.

          One can always tell when a Republican is taking Viagra because he gets taller.

          by shoeless on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 11:43:11 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Love VT, but it's a very small state with only (0+ / 0-)

        about 625,000 people, is largely rural and is an outlier in many respects, not the least of which is its socialist Senator.  Nah, sadly, VT will not lead the way to single payer.

        The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand Russell

        by accumbens on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 11:41:07 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Saskatchewan population (0+ / 0-)

          Saskatchewan, like Vermont, also has a very small population. When they went to single payer it was only 800,000 people. Today it is only 1 million. I'm sure many Canadians said that Saskatchewan would not lead the way to national single payer, but they did.

          One can always tell when a Republican is taking Viagra because he gets taller.

          by shoeless on Fri Aug 01, 2014 at 05:23:47 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I wonder about medical device companies (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Betty Pinson

    There was a lot of hand-wringing in the medical device community that the MD tax was going to destroy profits, etc.

    Anyone see any data on them?  Are they seeing more sales offsetting the effect of the tax?  (I suspect they will, but...)

  •  Conservatism marketed to liberals. (5+ / 0-)

    That's what the ACA has been from the start.  In 2009 I swore I would never be a cheerleader for nationalized Romneycare and I meant it.  I'm fine with the Medicaid expansion but the rest of the ACA is mostly a big pile of crap.

  •  A bit of history (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    CWinebrinner

    For you history buffs out there, the same thing happen when Medicare was implement in the 60s. In spite of all the predictions of dome for the Country, loss of doctors, and calls of Socialism, it turn out to be a cash cow for hospitals and insurers and doctors across the Nation. Its implementation was directly related to the growth of the large hospital systems throughout the Country.  I have no doubt, that in spite of the continued attacks on it, the ACA will soon be as much a part of health care as Medicare and Medicaid is.  Medicare also save and enhance the lives and health of millions of Seniors, just like the ACA will do for those who are younger.

  •  Celebrating for profit health care /facepalm (3+ / 0-)

    We are all Republicans now?

    Hillary does not have the benefit of a glib tongue.

    by The Dead Man on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 12:07:18 PM PDT

  •  In blue states.... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Shaylors Provence

    In my state the governor blocked a lot of people from getting it.

  •  Maybe... if you're lucky enough (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Shaylors Provence

    to live in a state that's accepted Medicaid expansion and hasn't fought ACA tooth-and-nail.

    Otherwise, wave buh-bye to all the closing hospitals and the soon-to-be-deceased.

  •  Who pays for it. The same people that were paying (0+ / 0-)

    before, except we are doing it the cheaper way now. An insurance based system doesn't work unless everyone has insurance. ER medical care was one of the most ridiculous ideas to ever come down the pike.

    Use REDUNDANT safety when hauling precious cargo-- Use open source E-Z Baby Saver -- Andrew Pelham, 11yo inventor E-Z Baby Saver

    by 88kathy on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 01:13:42 PM PDT

  •  Interesting (0+ / 0-)
    a reduction that grows to 48 percent in four states that expanded Medicaid,
    So in four states where HCA Holdings has hospitals, the number of uninsured patients dropped by 48 percent due to expanded Medicaid.

    That, to me, is amazingly good news!  I'd like to see those four states figures.

    Yes, HCA Holdings is going to make more money.  I knew that would happen with all the hospitals, and with all the insurance companies.  I don't care if they do; more power to them.  

    I care that people can go to the doctor for an infected cut, instead of waiting until black lines are running up their arms or until lockjaw from tetanus hits them.  I care that for the very poorest in our country (or at least for the states blue enough to have taken the Medicaid expansion), a minor infection is no longer a possible death sentence, and a ruptured appendix is not a guarantee of bankruptcy in two years.

    And for those positive changes, I'm willing to allow the hospitals and insurance companies to make a little more, even if their per-patient dollars will most likely drop.

    To the left, to the left....

    by CWinebrinner on Thu Jul 31, 2014 at 01:52:11 PM PDT

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