107,581,000 Already in Government Health Plans

Posted: Sep 24, 2014 12:01 AM

There were 107,581,000 people enrolled in government health insurance plans in the United States in 2013, the year before the Affordable Care Act (AKA Obamacare) was fully implemented.

The Census Bureau published this number last week in its annual report on health insurance.

These 107,581,000 pre-Obamacare government-health insurance enrollees equaled 34.3 percent of the nation's population, according to the Census Bureau.

Another 41,953,000 -- or 13.4 percent of the population -- were uninsured.

Together, the 149,534,000 people who were either uninsured or in government health insurance plans equaled 47.7 percent of the population.

The 107,581,000 enrolled in government health plans in 2013 also outnumbered the 105,862,000 who worked full-time year-round in 2013.

But 16,685,000 of those who worked full-time year-round, according to the Census Bureau, worked for federal, state or local government. Only 89,177,000 worked in the private sector.

The 107,581,000 enrolled in government health plans in 2013 outnumbered the 89,177,000 full-time private-sector workers by 18,404,000.

They also outnumbered the combined populations of the United Kingdom (63,742,977) and Poland (38,346,279), which equaled only 102,089,256, according to the CIA.

Again: This was in 2013 -- before full implantation of Obamacare.

"Government health insurance includes federal programs such as Medicare, Medicaid, the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), individual state health plans, TRICARE, CHAMPVA (Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Department of Veterans Affairs), as well as care provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs and the military," the Census Bureau said in its report.

The Census Bureau noted that people were counted as "insured" in the bureau's survey "if they were covered by any type of health insurance for part or all of the previous calendar year." They were counted as "uninsured" if they had no insurance at all during the year -- or "if they only had coverage through the Indian Health Service."

Some people were enrolled in more than one health insurance plan in 2013, including some who had more than one plan at one time and others who had different plans at different times.

According to the Census Bureau, 201,064,000 were covered by private insurance sometime during the year; 54,081,000 were covered by Medicaid; 48,977,000 were covered by Medicare; and 14,147,000 were covered by military-related health care.

23,525,000 were covered by Medicare and private insurance; 10,672,000 were covered by Medicaid and private insurance; and 5,123,000 were covered by Medicare and Medicaid.

Government control of health care for the elderly was essentially accomplished in the United States well before full implementation of Obamacare. In 2013, 93.1 percent of Americans 65 or older were on Medicare.

Government control of health care was approaching the halfway mark for children under 6 before full implementation of Obamacare, with 46.4 percent in that age group covered by government health insurance in 2013. Among all people under 18, 41.1 percent were already in a government health insurance plan in 2103.

The Census Bureau says that it "improved" its health insurance survey this year and that as a consequence "data users should exercise caution when comparing" this year's estimates with the estimates of previous years.

But two historical reference points are inescapable: President Lyndon Johnson signed Medicare and Medicaid into law in 1965. Fifty years ago, no Americans were in those programs.

Starting in 2014, Obamacare requires individual Americans to buy health insurance and requires the federal Treasury to pay part of the health insurance premiums for Americans earning up to 400 percent of the poverty level if they buy a government-approved plan on a government-run exchange.

Obamacare also allows states to expand eligibility for Medicaid.

In the next 10 years, according to the CBO: "Annual net outlays for the government's major health care programs (Medicare, Medicaid, the Children's Health Insurance Program, and subsidies for health insurance purchased through exchanges) are projected to rise by more than 85 percent."

A Republican-controlled House of Representatives last week passed a continuing resolution to fund the government after Sept. 30, when this fiscal year ends. That continuing resolution fully funds Obamacare.

America is on a fast fall to total government control of health care. And along with government control of health care, we will get government control of some of the most consequential decisions in our lives.