CBO: House Health Care Bill Will Cost $1 Trillion, Cover 97 Percent Of Americans

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July 14, 2009 12:05 p.m.

The Congressional Budget Office has conducted an analysis of the House’s health care reform draft, and the results are largely as its authors hoped and expected they would be.

The tables included in the report summarize our preliminary assessment of the coverage provisions’ budgetary effects and their likely impact on rates and sources of insurance coverage for the nonelderly population. According to that assessment, enacting those provisions by themselves would result in a net increase in federal budget deficits of $1,042 billion over the 2010-2019 period. By 2019, CBO and the JCT staff estimate, the number of nonelderly people who are uninsured would be reduced by about 37 million, leaving about 17 million nonelderly residents uninsured (nearly half of whom would be unauthorized immigrants).

House health care reform leaders were projecting a cost of one trillion dollars, and they hit that almost right on the nose. They propose to cover that cost through a combination of efficiencies wrung from Medicare and Medicaid and a surtax on wealthy Americans.

As for coverage, CBO found that the bill, if enacted would cover 97 percent of all Americans. This puts on a par–cost- and coverage-wise–with the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee’s reform draft, which was unveiled earlier this month.

Late update: You can read the entire report here.

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