Kathleen Sebelius | Obamacare is lowering health care costs or something

The law has also begun to curb rising health costs across the system by  cracking down on waste and fraud and creating powerful incentives for hospitals  to spend their resources more wisely. These reforms have already led to  significant improvements in health outcomes. That includes the first drop in  hospital readmissions for Medicare beneficiaries on record, which means when  people with Medicare go home from the hospital, they are more likely to stay  healthy and less likely to return.

Just as importantly, this progress has contributed to the slowest sustained  growth in health spending in 50 years. National health care spending has now  grown at historic lows for three consecutive years—and Medicare and Medicaid  spending is growing even slower. In 2012, Medicare spending per beneficiary rose  by less than 0.5 percent, while Medicaid spending actually dropped by nearly 2  percent.

The health care law is demonstrating the right way to deal with rising costs.  Instead of simply shifting the burden onto seniors and the needy, it’s bringing  down costs across the system by improving care coordination and cutting waste.  And it’s holding insurance companies accountable by limiting how much of your  premium they can spend on marketing and overhead. This protection has already  produced $13.9 million in rebates for residents of Michigan.


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