Surprise: Obamacare Creates More ER Patients, Reduces ER Specialists

Well, damnitall, if only someone had gotten off their behinds and warned us that this could happen!

(Science Daily) The average monthly emergency department visit increased by 5.7 percent in Illinois after the implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), although the population remained essentially flat. In Massachusetts, while visits to emergency departments climbed steadily between 2005 and 2014, availability of on-call specialists (surgeons, psychiatrists and other specialists) declined “significantly.” The results of two state-specific studies were published online last Thursday in Annals of Emergency Medicine (“Increased Emergency Department Use in Illinois After Implementation of the Affordable Care Act” and “Decline in Consultant Availability in Massachusetts Emergency Departments: 2005 to 2014”).

Now, in all fairness

“Emergency departments continue to be squeezed by pressures inside and outside the hospital,” said Scott Dresden, MD, MS, of Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago, Ill., the lead author of the Illinois paper. “A large post-ACA increase in Medicaid visits and a modest increase in privately insured visits outpaced a large reduction in emergency department visits by uninsured patients. We still don’t know if these results represent longer-term changes in health services use or a temporary spike in emergency department use due to pent up demand.”

Long term or short term? That’s the question. Will this be the same for on-call ER specialists? The study uses the term of 2005-2015, so, it can’t all be blamed on Ocare. Remember, though, Massachusetts passed their health law, Romneycare, in 2006, so, we do have a better idea of the long term results of government run health care.

We were told that Ocare would reduce ER visits. Well, this is not the first study to show an increase in ER visits, along with a reduction in ER personnel.

The Chicago Tribune chimes in on the study

One of the goals of expanding coverage to all was to reduce the use of pricey services, such as emergency department visits, which can sometimes be a last resort for people who don’t see doctors regularly, according to the study.

But the study’s authors noted that the spike in visits in Illinois “runs contrary” to that goal.

It’s unknown whether the surge will persist, or if was a temporary result of people with long-untreated conditions flocking to emergency rooms once they got insurance, the study said.

Do you know what happens when expensive ER visits rise? That’s right, overall costs for premiums, deductibles, and visits go up up up. Wasn’t Ocare supposed to decrease costs?

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13 Responses to “Surprise: Obamacare Creates More ER Patients, Reduces ER Specialists”

  1. john says:

    and Teach do you see an increase in people going to the ER as good or bad?
    Does this indicate that prior to ACA people who should have received medical care didn’t because they couldn’t afford it ?
    That would be the way I look at it. I am glad more people are now ABLE to go to the ER
    Maybe this is one indication of why people who have Government Health Plans are more satisfied than those with employer or self paid insurance.
    http://www.gallup.com/poll/186527/americans-government-health-plans-satisfied.aspx
    This is one reason why Americans want single payer

  2. david7134 says:

    john,
    I there any topic in the world for which you have even the slightest amount of knowledge. Your comment here clearly indicates a lack of any sense. Instead of commenting, spend the time reading and trying to learn something.

  3. Hoagie says:

    and Teach do you see an increase in people going to the ER as good or bad?

    I consider it bad unless it’s an actual emergency, don’t you? It’s a waste of hospital resources if the visit is not a bon fide emergency, as well as delaying people with actual emergencies from getting the urgent care they need.

    Does this indicate that prior to ACA people who should have received medical care didn’t because they couldn’t afford it ?

    That would be the way I look at it.

    Of course that’s the way you look at it, you’re an idiot. The same people who would go to an emergency room today for a non emergency are the same people who would have before the ACA, idiot. So they’re neither receiving more nor less than before.

    I am glad more people are now ABLE to go to the ER

    People have always been ABLE to get to the ER, that’s why it’s called the ER, idiot! That’s what ambulances are for.

    Maybe this is one indication of why people who have Government Health Plans are more satisfied than those with employer or self paid insurance.

    That stupidity requires no answer. Idiot.

  4. john says:

    No Teach ACA was not supposed to reduce the total cost. It WAS supposed to reduce the RATE OF INCREASE in healthcare. This it has done and now the rate of increase is at a near historical low, thanks for bringing that up even if you were mistaken

  5. Mike says:

    “Massachusetts passed their health law, Romneycare, in 2006” It, too, was sold with the idea that “universal” health coverage would reduce ER visits and thus save costs.

    In 2008, Emergency Department use was still high;

    Massachusetts’ 2006 health reform legislation sought to move the state to near universal health insurance coverage and to improve access to high quality care. The available research evidence shows that the state has achieved near universal health insurance coverage and has made significant gains in access to care. As of fall 2008, nearly all (92%) working-age adults in the state had a usual source of care for when they were sick or needed advice about their health and most (85%) had had at least one doctor visit in the past 12 months. Despite significant gains in access to care under health reform, high levels of emergency department (ED) use have persisted in Massachusetts. Specifically, ED use was high in Massachusetts prior to health reform and has stayed high under health reform.

    http://proof-proofpositive.blogspot.com/2010/04/romneycare-writ-large.html

  6. Liam Thomas says:

    @John there are still 27 million people who do not have insurance. There is a sure bet that millions of illegals do not have insurance that is not even reported.

    Why are the ER’s seeing more business?

    Obamacare Has Barely Made a Dent in ER Visits
    A new report shows plenty of Americans still received potentially costly care at the emergency room after the law took effect.

    A U.S. News and World Report…..certainly a rah, rah magazine for the Obama administration quoting CDC and Government sources.

    A good read actually….It shows that Obamacare has not made a dent in one of its goals….REDUCTION of ER visits which are costly.

    These costs by INSURED PEOPLE are driving up prices not driving them down….

    In other words everything about
    ACA is not working as intended…..

    This is the unintended consequences of ACA.

  7. Dana says:

    Mr Thomas wrote:

    In other words everything about
    ACA is not working as intended…..

    This is the unintended consequences of ACA.

    What makes you think that this was “unintended?”

    The left didn’t really care whether the ACA would work; they only wanted something, anything, that could pass, to establish the principle that the federal government would guarantee health care for everybody. If the ACA failed — which we all knew it would — then single-payer would be all that was left.

  8. Hank_M says:

    The ever clueless John wrote: “No Teach ACA was not supposed to reduce the total cost. It WAS supposed to reduce the RATE OF INCREASE in healthcare. This it has done and now the rate of increase is at a near historical low, thanks for bringing that up even if you were mistaken.”

    Wrong again. Obama stated on Dec 15th 2009, after meeting with Senate Dems that Health care reform plans being consided in Congress “will finally reduce the costs of health care.”

    That’s on top of his stating in 2008 that “We will start by reducing premiums by as much as $2,500 per family.”

    All lies of course.

  9. john says:

    Hank my good buddy, yes it is true that the total haealthcare costs are going up, but at an historical low rate of increase. So
    Yes Hank you are correct it has failed to actually revevrse the decades long increase in healthcare costs.
    But of course I did not say that would happen did I?
    You have found a quote by someone else and have decided that it somehow refutes what I stated.
    The ACA has reduced teh RATE OF INCREASE to historical lows.
    Please try to avoid confusing what I say, with all that other people say. I am not Obama.

  10. john says:

    And Hank…… any comments on what Gallup reported on Americans wanting single payer or being most happy with government health plans ????
    People on the right don’t seem to realize what a small minority they have become in our country. Teach is always saying things like PPP polls are uber left, when in fact they are not. The extreme right wing of the GOP has hijacked the GOP. Demanding things like a stop on all abortions, building a wall, deporting 11 million people who have lived in the nUSA an average of 11 years, HB2 silly bathroom laws, and nominating a clown like tRump

  11. Hoagie says:

    And Hank…… any comments on what Gallup reported on Americans wanting single payer or being most happy with government health plans ????

    That’s not what the Gallup poll indicated. Americans on “government healthcare plans” are veterans. Ask them how they like it.

    If you believe a poll without reading the questions that created the poll you’re an idiot. Or a leftist, whichever. That’s why nobody believes your polls. Print the questions then we can see if the poll was non partisan.

  12. Hoagie says:

    John, here’s a poll for ya. Sink your teeth into this one:

    Thursday, September 01, 2016

    Hillary Clinton’s post-convention lead has disappeared, putting her behind Donald Trump for the first time nationally since mid-July.

    The latest weekly Rasmussen Reports White House Watch shows Trump with 40% support to Clinton’s 39% among Likely U.S. Voters, after Clinton led 42% to 38% a week ago. Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson now earns seven percent (7%) of the vote, down from nine percent (9%) the previous two weeks, while Green Party candidate Jill Stein picks up three percent (3%) support. Three percent (3%) like some other candidate, and seven percent (7%) are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

    Clinton’s support has been trending down from a high of 44% in early August just after the Democratic National Convention.

  13. Hank_M says:

    John, my carbon polluting truck driving friend, Teach asked: “Wasn’t Ocare supposed to decrease costs?” You replied that he was wrong. I tried to point out that our host was indeed correct quoting Barry O himself.
    This shouldn’t be difficult. Then again…….