How Balloons Represent Obamacare’s Future

October 3, 2013

Expanding insured without lowering per capita insured spending will expand the already fragile healthcare balloon to inevitable failure.

As the political circus over Obamacare plays itself out in an all-or-nothing fight for political primacy, the effect of simple, everyday physics has not only been ignored, it has never occurred to policy makers and legislators, and we may all pay the price.

As money pours into the system created by Obamacare’s expansion of insured people, the already acute problem of overall spending will rapidly overcome the ability of the economy to afford it.

How can anyone be sure about this? Just as traffic planners turn to hydraulics to predict traffic flow, the impact on the healthcare system by expanding its base can be predicted by physics.

In this case, toyballoon physics. Inflating a balloon creates two physical conditions: strain and stress. Think of strain as how big the balloon is and stress as how tight the balloon is.

Think of our present healthcare system as a balloon.

Now, think of the balloon already at its breaking point represented by its percentage of the Gross Domestic Product.

Adding more people to the insured system, where per capita insured spending is higher because insured people demand more services and previously uninsured people need more services, and cramming them into an already overinflated balloon creates, well … every child knows the outcome.

The only solution is to reduce the size of the air molecules, or the per-capita insured spend, to fit more into the balloon without breaking it.

So, fitting the more insured into the insurance balloon without reducing their amount of per capita spending will simply increase stress and strain past the breaking point.The Obamacare theory of spreading the cost over a larger base to reduce spending is, unfortunately, busted.

Cutting waste such as unnecessary hospital admissions, readmissions, ER visits, imaging, duplicated services and the like will make the needed room and, in time, deflate the balloon, keep the party going and allow everyone to have their cake, and eat it, too.

Congress creates enough hot air to float a lead balloon. Maybe it’s time for them to step aside along with the bloviated bureaucracy and let the professionals handle things.