by Rituparna Basu
Pacific Research Institute
January 23, 2014
The American health insurance system is plagued with problems, such as continually rising premiums and the difficulty of finding coverage. The Obama administration’s diagnosis of the situation was clear: health insurance companies have too much freedom. The solution, therefore, is for the government to restrict this freedom, through provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA). Many in America accept President Obama’s diagnosis and solution because they assume that the health insurance industry pre-ACA was an essentially free industry. A survey of some of the major controls pre-ACA reveals that health insurance was already one of the most government-controlled industries. Evidence suggests that government regulation plays a major role in the poor state of health insurance today. We must be willing to entertain the possibility that our diagnosis is mistaken: the patient’s illness stems not from too much freedom but from too many controls.



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