FOX Business News interviewed Manatt’s Joel S. Ario, a managing director with Manatt Health Solutions, on who the “winners” and the “losers” will be when the Supreme Court decides the fate of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
According to FOX Business News, America—in addition to the Obama Administration—has a lot at stake in the Supreme Court’s decision over the constitutionality of health reform.
“Pretty much every industry has been in a holding pattern, waiting to see what the Court rules,” said Ario. “The legislation touches every significant part of the healthcare world; healthcare is 20% of the economy, and how the Court rules can significantly alter each part—for better or worse.”
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act was signed into law in March 2010 and requires that nearly everyone in the United States has insurance by 2014. It also expands Medicaid eligibility and reforms the insurance industry. Although the Supreme Court has been determining the legislation’s constitutionality since mid-March, companies and states have already begun taking steps toward compliance.
“Every state except Utah has taken millions of dollars to modernize Medicaid and build exchanges. No state isn’t actively moving forward with this reform, it’s just been happening quietly,” Ario said.
If the Court rules the act constitutional, the “winners” will be health insurance companies, Medicaid providers, prescription drug companies and general practitioners.
“Under this law, [health insurance companies] have means to be able to cover everybody and they get a trillion dollars in new public support to do it,” said Ario. He added that over the next five years, the industry will get $940 billion in tax credits and Medicaid expansion dollars to cover people.
With regard to general practitioners, Ario said that the payment and delivery reform included in the act tends to favor family doctors over specialists. “There are simple things included in the law that reduce the need for specialists ... you will see some interesting fights in the provider world between specialists, who had been winning the payment war for the last 20, 40 years, and general practitioners.”
The “losers” will be insurance companies, wellness care and medical device companies.