Friday, March 25, 2011

New Healthcare Law's Taxes And Controls Will Stop US Life Expectancy Gains

From The Wall Street Journal opinion, "The March of Health Progress: A new report shows lower death rates and lower infant mortality."
Life expectancy in the U.S. rose again to 78.2 years in 2009
The overall age-adjusted death rate (the probability of dying at any particular age) fell to 741 from 759 per 100,000—again in a single year, and the 10th consecutive year the death rate has fallen. What an irony that all of this progress took place over a decade when we were told that lack of health insurance was dooming millions to inadequate care. It turns out that advances in medical treatment matter far more to overall health progress than do insurance coverage rates.
A poor person in America today has access to much better health care than did a billionaire or a prince in the 1950s.

The main objective of health-care policy should be to maintain an environment and incentives so this progress can continue. The greatest tragedy of ObamaCare is that its taxes on medical device makers and others will slow that progress, while its price controls on insurance and medical providers deter competition and innovation. Yes, American health care is expensive, but the CDC report shows that its benefits include longer and better lives.

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