John Holahan & Linda J. Blumberg

John Holahan is an Institute fellow at the Urban Institute, where he was previously director of the Health Policy Center. 

Linda J. Blumberg is an economist and senior fellow at the center.

Recent Articles

Capping Provider Payment: An Alternative to a Public Option

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This article appears in the Winter 2018 issue of The American Prospect magazine as part of a joint project with the Century Foundation on Health Reform 2020 . Subscribe here to The American Prospect . hc2020_logo-04_jpeg.jpg Before the Trump administration adopted policies undermining the Affordable Care Act, the ACA’s marketplaces were working well where there was competition, but faced high and rapidly increasing premiums in areas with only one or two insurers or a limited number of providers. Without significant competition, insurers have little incentive to negotiate lower payment rates for hospitals and doctors, and when a provider system is essentially a monopoly in a region, even a well-motivated, dominant insurer has little negotiating leverage. One answer some people have suggested for these problems of high premiums and concentrated market power is to create a public option—a government-run plan to compete with private insurers. We suggest a simpler and more...