Ensuring the Fiscal Sustainability of Health Care Reform

New England Journal of Medicine
December 9, 2009
Chernew, M.E., Sabik, L., Chandra, A., and J.P. Newhouse

Much of the recent health care reform debate has focused on achieving budget neutrality over a 10-year period, but this goal is less important than the reform's long-run fiscal sustainability. If the rate of growth of health care spending continues to exceed the rate of income growth by its historical margin of more than 2 percentage points, the consequences for beneficiaries, federal and state budgets, and the entire economy — given the implied increase in tax rates and forgone consumption — will be dire.1 For this reason, health care reform is an economic issue as much as, if not more...

View full article...