$2.9 Trillion In Favor Of A Public Plan

December 1, 2009

Public Plan Would Save Nearly $2 Trillion

The Commonwealth Fund asserted that even if a final healthcare reform package omitted a public plan (as many Republicans want), other proposed measures could still rack up $1 trillion in savings from 2010 to 2020.

The public-plan option would save about $2.9 trillion, while reforming the healthcare system with the current, private insurance market would save $1.2 trillion, according to researchers led by Cathy Schoen, the fund’s senior vice president for research and lead author of the report.

The report adds additional comparative data to the debate on the controversial public plan idea as Congress works on a healthcare reform package.

On the one hand, the findings add some credence to Democrats’ claim that a government-run insurance plan would help reduce out-of-control spending, but also predicts significant savings even without the public plan.

“Each of the paths we analyzed would take significant steps toward ensuring that everyone has access to high-quality, affordable health care,” said Schoen.

But she emphasized the report’s conclusion that a public insurance plan paying doctors and hospitals at Medicare rates would save close to $2 trillion more.

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